Mark Armentrout is President of the Texas Institute, an independent nonprofit institute for sustainable technology research.
From 2005 through 2008, Mr. Armentrout served as Board Chair of ERCOT, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. ERCOT manages the electric flow to 85 percent of the state’s electric load. Mark was a member of the board from 2003 through 2009.
From 2000 through 2006, Mr. Armentrout was an information technology executive vice president for MBNA, the world’s largest independent credit card company, which is now part of Bank of America. Prior to joining MBNA, he spent 24 years with Atlantic Richfield Company, the nation’s sixth largest integrated oil and gas company that was acquired by British Petroleum in 2000. In his last position with ARCO, he managed information technology services for exploration and production, responsible for staffs in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa.
Mr. Armentrout serves on a number of boards, including the Advisory Boards of The University of Texas as Dallas’ Erik Jonsson Engineering School, the Texas Christian University’s Science and Engineering Department, and the University of North Texas’ Information Technology and Decision Sciences School. He also serves the community on the boards of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Collin County, Serenity High School, and the Education Board for the Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary. While in Alaska in the 1990s, he was instrumental in working with the Governor’s office and Native American and industrial groups to bring the Internet to schools in the Alaskan bush. He is a member of IEEE.
Mr. Armentrout holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science, summa cum laude, and a master’s degree in political science with a major in philosophy from Texas A&M University at Commerce.
Congressman Bill Flores was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in November 2010, never having held an elected public office before. He was officially sworn into the 112th Congress on January 5, 2011, and currently represents the 17th Congressional District of Texas. Congressman Flores serves as a Member on the House Budget, Natural Resources and Veterans’ Affairs Committees. He is a ninth generation Texan and was raised in Stratford, a small town in the Texas Panhandle.
Before retiring to pursue public service, Congressman Flores served as CFO for a number of successful energy companies and ultimately became the CEO and president of Phoenix Exploration Company. He has 30 years of experience in the energy industry, including oil field services, as well as exploration and production.
Congressman Flores earned a BBA in Accounting from Texas A&M University and an MBA from Houston Baptist University. He and his wife, Gina, have provided scholarships, faculty fellowships and infrastructure investments to support higher education at Texas A&M University and Houston Baptist University. They are also major benefactors of K-12 education, including support for Yellowstone Academy, which provides elementary education to children in one of Houston’s poorest inner city areas.
In 2010, Texas A&M University honored him as a Distinguished Alumnus, its highest award for Former Students.
Congressman Flores and his wife are members of Central Baptist Church in Bryan, Texas, and have two adult sons.
Bruce Hamilton is President of Fuelco, a privately held Limited Liability Company owned by Ameren, Luminant, and Pacific Gas and Electric. Fuelco manages the global fuel supply for its owners’ nuclear power plants in Missouri, Texas and California. The uranium procured by Fuelco produces enough electricity for five million American homes.
Mr. Hamilton has a background of managing technologically complex nuclear ventures and leading mid-size organizations. He has represented his company’s interests in sensitive strategic programs and projects which have contained both technically intricate and politically nuanced elements. Immediately prior to becoming President of Fuelco, he was the Director of Engineering Support at Luminant’s Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant.
Before joining TXU (now Luminant) in 2003, Mr. Hamilton served as a U.S. naval officer for twenty-four years, retiring as a Captain in 2002. While on active duty, he had assignments in nuclear-powered cruisers and aircraft carriers, he commanded the destroyer USS John Paul Jones while deployed to the Middle East, and he served as Reactor Officer for the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz during the ship’s mid-life refueling overhaul, reactor startup certification and 2001 home-port shift from Virginia to California. In the mid-1990s, he worked at Headquarters, United States European Command as Policy Desk Officer for the former Yugoslavia where he covered the war in Bosnia and participated in the Dayton Peace Accords negotiations.
Mr. Hamilton holds a B.S. from Texas A&M University, an M.A. from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, a graduate degree from the Naval War College, and a Ph.D. from Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy. He is a registered professional mechanical engineer in the state of Texas, and while at Comanche Peak, he held a Senior Reactor Operator license with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
In the community, Mr. Hamilton conceived, planned and executed the 2005 merger which created the 3,600 member World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth. The organization was subsequently awarded Most Vibrant Council in the United States. He continues to serve as a Director on the Board and is immediate past Vice Chairman. Mr. Hamilton is an active member of the Dallas Committee on Foreign Relations, a Director on the Board of the Texas Aggie Band Association, an Advisory Board member of the Institute for Effective Leadership, and a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors. A native Texan, he resides in Tarrant County with his wife, the former Cynthia Cook of Billings, Montana, and their children, Elizabeth and Bradford.
Kathleen Hartnett White
Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence and Director, Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment
Kathleen Hartnett White joined the Texas Public Policy Foundation in January 2008. She is a Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence and Director of the Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment.
Prior to joining the Foundation, White served a six-year term as Chairman and Commissioner of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). With regulatory jurisdiction over air quality, water quality, water rights & utilities, storage and disposal of waste, TCEQ’s staff of 3,000, annual budget of over $600 million and 16 regional offices make it the second largest environmental regulatory agency in the world after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Prior to Governor Rick Perry’s appointment of White to the TCEQ in 2001, she served as then Governor George Bush appointee to the Texas Water Development Board where she sat until appointed to TCEQ. She also served on the Texas Economic Development Commission and the Environmental Flows Study Commission.
White is also co-owner of White Herefords and a partner with her husband in a 125 year-old ranching operation in Jeff Davis and Presidio counties. She also is Vice-Chairman of the Texas Water Foundation and sits on the board of the Texas Natural Resource Foundation. She recently received the 2007 Texas Water Conservation Association’s President’s award, the Colorado River Foundation’s Friend of the River Award and the Texas Chemical Council’s Leadership Award.
A writer and consultant on environmental laws, free market natural resource policy, private property rights and ranching history, White received her bachelor cum laude and master degrees from Stanford University where for three years she held the Elizabeth Wheeler Lyman Scholarship for an Outstanding Woman in the Humanities. She was also awarded a Danforth National Fellowship for doctoral work at Princeton University in Comparative Religion and there won the Jonathan Edwards Award for Academic Excellence. She also studied law under a Lineberry Foundation Fellowship at Tech University.
White was Director of Private Lands and the Environment for the National Cattlemen's Association in Washington, D.C. She has served as director of the Ranching Heritage Association and was a special assistant in the White House Office of the First Lady Nancy Reagan.
She is a member of the Texas and Southwestern Cattleraisers Association, the Texas Hereford Association and the American Hereford Association. She is a former commissioner of the Texas Strategic Economic Development Planning Commission, a former board member of the Texas Wildlife Association and the National Cattlemen's Legal Defense Fund.
A long-time breeder of National Champion Jack Russell Terriers, Kathleen Hartnett White lives with her husband Beau Brite White in Bastrop County, Texas outside of Austin and in Presidio County Texas on the far southwestern border of Texas.
Chairman Elizabeth Ames Jones serves as the Chairman of the Railroad Commission of Texas (Commission). For over one hundred years, the Railroad Commission has been overseeing all aspects of the oil and gas industry, and now the oversight includes pipeline safety, alternative fuels, and coal and uranium surface mining and reclamation. The Commission no longer has anything to do with the rail industry.
A former member of the Texas Legislature, Chairman Jones was first elected in 2000 to the Texas House of Representatives. She was re-elected in 2002 and 2004. She stepped up to fill a vacancy on the Railroad Commission in 2005 and was elected statewide to a full term on the Commission in 2006. She served as Chairman from 2005 -2007 and was recently re-elected to that position.
The recipient of many awards recognizing her work ethic and conservative principles in the Legislature, Chairman Jones maintains the same high standards as a Railroad Commissioner. Having grown up in the “oil patch,” Jones has a deep knowledge of the energy industries she regulates. She has been speaking out for sound public policy so that America, like Texas, can reap the benefits of a vibrant and responsible domestic oil and natural gas industry. Her energy commentaries have been published in the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and various business journals around the state.
A sixth generation Texan, Chairman Jones has been married to Will Jones, an attorney in Austin, for 27 years. They are the parents of a son and a daughter.
Lynn Lyon is leading the development of the Texas Clean Transportation Triangle (TCTT). This $82M initiative will provide a natural gas fueling infrastructure connecting Dallas/Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin and Houston to support fleets and other drivers with strategically planned high volume public access stations. The project is spearheaded by America’s Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) in collaboration with over 200 companies, non-profit corporations and academic institutions in Texas.
Ms. Lyon manages strategic projects for domestic operations at Pioneer Natural Resources (Pioneer), based in Irving, TX. Pioneer has operations in the Barnett Shale, South Texas, Eagle Ford, Permian, Mid-Continent, Rockies and Alaska. She is responsible for converting Pioneer’s corporate fleet to natural gas with 31 trucks already converted in Colorado. Plans include up to 1,000 trucks companywide including 400 in Texas.
Ms. Lyon is on the Board of Directors at NGVAmerica. She is a founding member of the Clean American Transportation Alliance (CATA) and an active member of the Metroplex NGV Consortium at Texas Christian University and the Maguire Energy Institute at Southern Methodist University. She has a master’s in business administration from Southern Methodist University.
C. Michael Ming currently serves as the Oklahoma Secretary of Energy, appointed by Governor Mary Fallin in January 2011. He formerly served as the President of the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA), as an independent natural gas producer, and as a Managing Member and principal of K. Stewart Energy Group and K. Stewart Petroleum Corp. He holds a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Petroleum Engineering and a master’s degree in Engineering Management, both from Stanford University, and is a Registered Professional Engineer in Oklahoma.
Mr. Ming is an emeritus member and past Chairman of the Petroleum Investments Committee at Stanford University. He is actively involved in the University’s energy programs and co-sponsored the MAP/Ming Visiting Professorship on Energy and the Environment. He currently serves on advisory boards for the Stanford School of Earth Sciences, the Bureau of Economic Geology at The University of Texas, and MAP. He formerly served on the MIT Future of Natural Gas Study, the Oklahoma Clean Energy Independence Commission, as an adjunct professor in Energy Management at the University of Oklahoma, and as an oil and gas strategic planning advisor to the Department of Energy.
Ross Ramsey is managing editor of The Texas Tribune and continues as editor of Texas Weekly, the premier newsletter on government and politics in the Lone Star State, a role he’s had since September 1998. Texas Weekly was a print-only journal when he took the reins in 1998; he switched it to a subscription-based, internet-only journal by the end of 2004 without a significant loss in subscribers. As Texas Weekly’s primary writer for 11 years, he turned out roughly 2 million words in more than 500 editions, added an online library of resources and documents and items of interest to insiders, and a daily news clipping service that links to stories from papers across Texas.
Before joining Texas Weekly in September 1998, Ramsey was associate deputy comptroller for policy with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, also working as the agency’s director of communications. Prior to that 28- month stint in government, Ramsey spent 17 years in journalism, reporting for the Houston Chronicle from its Austin bureau and for the Dallas Times Herald, first on the business desk in Dallas and later as the paper’s Austin bureau chief. Prior to that, as a Dallas-based freelance business writer, he wrote for regional and national magazines and newspapers. Ramsey got his start in journalism in broadcasting, working for almost seven years covering news for radio stations in Denton and Dallas.
Dr. Roop is an Assistant Agency Director overseeing the Multimodal Freight Transportation Programs and the Transportation Safety Center at the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI). He is responsible for guiding transportation and safety research in the areas of rail, ports and waterways, intermodal trucking, and pipelines with the goal of establishing these areas as a national focal point for innovative research. Dr. Roop is a systems design engineer leading TTI’s efforts to develop innovative systems for freight transportation. As the designer of the Freight Shuttle System and Chairman of Freight Shuttle International, Dr. Roop is involved in prototype design, project development and assessment of cross border opportunities.
Dr. Roop chairs the National Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Safety Conference, sponsored by TTI, is a member of the Transportation Research Board Committee on Intermodal Freight Transport (AT045) and Committee on Highway-Rail Grade Crossings (AHB60). He also serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.
Barry Smitherman is a fourth generation Texan appointed by Governor Rick Perry to the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) on April 21, 2004. He was reappointed on September 13, 2007, and promoted to Chairman on November 14, 2007. In March 2008, he was appointed to the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Electricity Advisory Committee (EAC) by Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman. In August 2010, he was reappointed by Secretary Steven Chu. In 2009, he received the State Leadership award from the American Wind Energy Association for the PUCT’s pioneering renewable energy zone policy for proactive transmission development. He was recently selected one of the Energy and Utility Industry’s “Great Transformers” for 2010 by a partnership which includes Utilicast and Forbes magazine. In May 2010, he was recognized for “Outstanding Contributions and Dedication to Public Service as Chairman of the PUCT” by the CenTex Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration.
Mr. Smitherman is a member of the State Bar of Texas, a member of the Governor Perry's Competitiveness Council and Vice Chairman of the Governor’s Advisory panel on Federal Environmental Regulation, and an ex officio board member of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). He is secretary/treasurer of the Regional State Committee (RSC) for the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) where he was one of the Synergistic Planning Project Team (SPPT) members which devised a new long term integrated transmission expansion planning process and cost allocation methodology—a process and methodology recently approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). In addition, he is a member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Committee on Energy Resources and the Environment (ERE).
Mr. Smitherman grew up in Highlands, Texas; a working class neighborhood on the east side of Houston. He graduated from Ross Sterling High School in Baytown and continued his education at Texas A&M University receiving a Bachelor of Business Administration summa cum laude. He received a Doctor of Jurisprudence from The University of Texas School of Law while working at the State Capitol for Senator Lindon Williams. Afterward, he received a Master of Public Administration at Harvard University and was awarded the first Joel Leff Fellowship in Political Economy by the Kennedy School of Government.
For 16 years, Mr. Smitherman was a public finance investment banker working with state and local governments throughout the South, Southwest, and Midwest to build infrastructure projects such as roads, bridges, airports, water and sewer systems, schools, hospitals, and sports facilities. He held leadership positions with First Boston, Lazard Freres, JP Morgan Securities, and Bank One Capital Markets where he was National Head of the Tax Exempt Department. During this time, he helped municipalities save hundreds of millions of dollars in debt service.
Mr. Smitherman has also been a prosecutor with the Harris County District Attorney’s office. During this time, he successfully prosecuted many jury trials against defendants charged with DWI, assault, theft, possession of controlled substance, and numerous other crimes.
In 1990, Mr. Smitherman was a member of the American Center for International Leadership delegation to the former Soviet Union. In 1996, Barry was a delegate to the State Republican convention in San Antonio. He is also a former adjunct professor of public administration at the University of St. Thomas in Houston and a former member of the Boards of the Texas Public Finance Authority and the Harris County Health Facilities Development Corporation.
Mr. Smitherman and his wife of 24 years live in Austin with two of their four wonderful children. Their two oldest sons attend Texas A&M University.
Glen Stancil is a Vice President at NRG working the Electric Vehicle Services business unit. In this capacity, he is responsible for market entry strategy and product development for the company’s new services offerings for electric vehicles. During his seven years with NRG and Reliant, Glen has held various general management and functional support roles in mass marketing, portfolio management, product strategy, strategic planning, and business development.
Prior to NRG and Reliant, Glen was vice president of product marketing for start-up technology companies in wireless data communications and GPS avionics. Glen’s background also includes professional services positions in energy, technology strategy, and system design with McKinsey & Company and Andersen Consulting, as well as product marketing, product design, and product development roles with Seagull Technology and IBM.
Glen holds an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from The University of Texas at Austin as well as an MBA from Stanford University.
Dr. Scott W. Tinker is Director of the Bureau of Economic Geology, the State Geologist of Texas, Director of the Advanced Energy Consortium, a Professor holding the Allday Endowed Chair and acting Associate Dean of Research in the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin. He spent 17 years in the oil and gas industry prior to coming to UT in 2000.
Dr. Tinker is past President of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (‘08-‘09) and the Association of American State Geologists (’06-’07). He was a Distinguished Lecturer for the AAPG (’97), Society of Petroleum Engineers (‘02), and Distinguished Ethics Lecturer for the AAPG (’06-’07) and won best paper awards in two major journals. He holds appointments on the National Petroleum Council, the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission and serves on several private, professional and academic boards. His passion is building bridges between academia, industry and government, and he has given over 400 invited and keynote lectures and visited over 45 countries toward this end. Dr. Tinker’s degrees are from the University of Colorado (Ph.D.), the University of Michigan (M.S.) and Trinity University (B.S.).