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Press Release

PUC Chairman Brown Thanks Gov. Wolf for Appointment, Thanks Commissioner Powelson for 4+ Years of Service as Chairman

Published on 5/7/2015

Filed under: Electric Gas Water and Wastewater Telecommunications Transportation and Safety

HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today recognized Gov. Tom Wolf’s appointment of Commissioner Gladys M. Brown of Dauphin County as the PUC’s new Chairman, effective at noon today.  She replaces Robert F. Powelson of Chester County, who will remain as Commissioner.  John F. Coleman Jr. of Centre County will remain as Vice Chairman.

“I am honored by the Governor’s appointment to this important position,” Chairman Brown said.  “This is such a critical time here at the Commission as we implement new and existing laws and regulations impacting utilities and their customers; address aging utility infrastructure; enforce pipeline safety; and educate consumers about their choices and their rights.  I commend and thank my colleague Rob Powelson for leading this Commission so well for more than four years.  I look forward to continuing to work collegially with my fellow Commissioners and the dedicated PUC staff as we address the challenges and opportunities ahead.”

Commissioner Powelson said, “As I said when we welcomed Gladys to the Commission in 2013, she is a tireless advocate for consumers, both personally and professionally.  I am grateful for her friendship and support.  It is my honor to pass the gavel to Chairman Brown and to continue to serve on this Commission.”

Governors nominate Commissioners, who must be confirmed by a majority in the state Senate.  A new Governor can appoint a sitting Commissioner as Chairman.

Chairman Brown was sworn in as a Pennsylvania Public Utility Commissioner on Oct. 2, 2013, after receiving unanimous approval from the Pennsylvania Senate.  Her term expires April 1, 2018.  During her confirmation hearing, Commissioner Brown pledged to use the same fair and balanced approach in dealing with PUC issues that she used in her more than 22 years as an aide and counsel in the Pennsylvania Senate.  She highlighted that one of her goals on the Commission is to increase efforts to educate consumers.

A native of Middletown and a resident of Harrisburg, Chairman Brown earned her bachelor’s and juris doctorate degrees from the University of Pittsburgh.  She is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association, currently serving on the House of Delegates for the organization.  She also is a member of the Dauphin County Bar Association, the James S. Bowman Inns of Court and the Keystone Bar Association.  She is an active member at Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Harrisburg.  She also is an active member in Epsilon Sigma Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.  She recently joined the Board of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities; ensures safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protects the public interest; educates consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; furthers economic development; and fosters new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.

For recent news releases and video of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our website at  Follow the PUC on Twitter – @PA_PUC for all things utility.  “Like” PAPowerSwitch on Facebook for easy access to information on electric shopping.





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