Elliot Mainzer has ended a seven-year stint as CEO/administrator at BPA to lead the California ISO, where he will succeed Steve Berberich as president and CEO. Mainzer's last day at Bonneville was Aug. 31, and he starts at CAISO Sept. 30, when Berberich retires. Mainzer joined BPA in 2002, and rose to the top position there in 2014 following several months serving in an acting capacity in 2013. John Hairston has been serving as acting BPA administrator and CEO since Sept. 1. He has been with Bonneville for 29 years, including as the agency's first chief administrative officer from 2015 to 2019, before being selected as COO in October 2019. Departing CAISO chief Berberich spent 14 years there, the past nine as CEO.
Plaintiffs in a lawsuit on Aug. 5 asked a federal judge to stay all proceedings until Congress decides whether to modify a water allocation plan for the 13 multipurpose dams in the Willamette Project in Oregon as part of its Water Resources Development Act. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers objected to the requested stay, saying that its basis—that only Congress has the authority in the matter—is the same argument the government opposed in a preliminary injunction to prevent the Corps from moving forward with a plan. The Corps argued in an Aug. 7 response that the judge should dismiss the case (Waterwatch of Oregon, et al. v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers [20-413]).
Steve Crow, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council's second and longest-serving executive director, retired Aug. 14 after 25 years at the helm, and a total of 32 years serving the Council. Succeeding him was Bill Edmonds, who began Aug. 17.
The Northwest Public Power Association on Sept. 10 awarded Oregon Rep. Greg Walden the Homer T. Bone Award, recognizing Walden's "strong support over many years on a wide variety of issues important to consumer-owned electric utilities," said NWPPA Executive Director Scott Corwin in a statement. Under Walden's leadership the U.S. House of Representatives passed several bills to boost hydropower production and have it recognized as renewable energy by federal law, the release said. The award, created in 2014, honors Bone's public power support, which earned him the nickname "father of public power."