Raimondo nominates Olton to head PUC

PROVIDENCE – Gov. Gina M. Raimondo has nominated Laura S. Olton to chair the R.I. Public Utilities Commission, the governor’s office announced Monday.

Olton’s appointment is subject to R.I. Senate advice and consent. If approved, she will replace Margaret Curran, who was appointed chairwoman in 2013.

The governor’s office noted that the chairperson of the PUC is required by law to chair the Energy Facility Siting Board and that Curran will remain the chair of the EFSB until the conclusion of the proceeding related to the Clear River Energy Center power plant proposed for Burrillville by Invenergy Development LLC. Olton previously served as general counsel of the Mass. Department of Public Utilities from 2008 through 2011.

“Laura has deep experience in the clean energy sectors that are the future in Rhode Island. She is well positioned to lead the PUC as it tackles the important issues of building a clean, affordable, reliable energy future,” Raimondo said.

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Olton currently serves as the principal of LSO Energy Advisors and chairs the Town of Wellesley Sustainable Energy Committee.