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Public Utilities Commission announces new ERCOT board members, chair

Joining the board will be a former executive chair of Western Refining Inc. and the president of a company developing a high-speed train service in Texas.

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas power grid operator ERCOT has two new board members, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) announced on Monday.

Joining the board will be Paul Foster, the former executive chair of Western Refining Inc., and Carlos Aguilar, president of Texas Central Partners LLC, a company seeking to develop high-speed train service in Texas. Foster will serve as the chair of the ERCOT board.

The PUC said the ERCOT board is now constituted in accordance with Senate Bill 2, which shrinks the number of seats on the board from 16 to 11. It also gives the State’s top politicians strong influence over members of the board, with a selection committee made up of three people appointed by the governor, the lieutenant governor and the speaker of the Texas House, respectively.

The board members of the PUC, which oversees ERCOT, are already appointed by the governor.

Foster is the president of Franklin Management LLC and former executive chairman of crude oil refiner and marketer Western Refining Inc. He has served as chairman of the University of Texas system board of regents as well as a member of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, the University of Texas system Lands Advisory Board and the El Paso Branch of the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank.

Aguilar’s company is developing a high-speed train to connect North Texas to Houston. He also serves as a board member of the nonprofit Counterpart International.

Credit: PUC of Texas
Carlos Aguilar (left) and Paul Foster (right)

“Today’s good news only adds to the remarkable progress that ERCOT and the PUC have made in stabilizing the grid to ensure reliable power generation for Texas,” said PUC Chairman Peter Lake. “With these initial selections, the Board Selection Committee has chosen exceptional leaders to guide ERCOT into the future.”

The PUC said the remaining six board directors are expected to be named in the coming months. Texans interested in submitting inquiries or information related to the director positions may email the Selection Committee’s search firm at ERCOTBoard@heidrick.com.

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