John Stauffacher Named 2013 GCPA Power Star Award Recipient


Stauffacher joins an illustrious list of past recipients including: Mike Greene, former TXU/Energy Future Holdings executive (2012); Marianne Carroll, Partner at the law firm of Brown McCarroll (2011); Trudy Harper, President of Tenaska Power Services (2010); Jess Totten, Director of Competitive Markets at the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUCT) (2009); F. John Meyer, former VP of Regulatory & Transmission Services for Reliant Energy (2008); Sam Jones, former Electric Reliability Council of Texas CEO (2007); and Pat Wood III, former PUCT and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman (2006). The award is named for Wood, who will assist in presenting the award during a luncheon on April 9 at GCPA’s 27th Annual Spring Conference in Houston, Texas.

“John Stauffacher has been a true leader in the development and transformation of competitive power markets in Texas throughout his career. In more recent years, John also nobly guided the GCPA in assuming its role as a leading forum where all sides of issues important to the contemporary power market are welcomed,” said Tom Foreman, GCPA Executive Director.

Prior to his retirement in January 2013 after a nine year tenure as the previous Executive Director of GCPA, Stauffacher led the organization through a period of substantial growth in both membership and programs. Corporate membership increased from less than 30 companies to over 100, and attendance at the two GCPA annual conferences grew to record numbers. New programs including scholarships to students expressing an interest in the power industry and a series of timely special briefings addressing emerging high profile issues were also added. During his tenure, GCPA’s role was solidified as a leading and highly respected regional organization focused on providing a platform for all sides of the many issues facing the regional power industry.

“It was an easy decision for the Board to select John Stauffacher for this award,” said Paul Schulze, President of the GCPA Board of Directors. “Throughout his career, John has always served as a colleague, as a mentor, and as a wealth of knowledge for many in the industry here in Texas.”

Stauffacher spent nearly 30 years of his career as an advocate for opening the electric power industry to new participants and competitive forces. While his work was based on various positions he held with industrial power producers, independent power producers and marketers, Stauffacher’s efforts as an advocate were largely conducted through regional and national industry trade groups.

After graduating with a Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Wisconsin at Madison in 1963 and serving four years in the U.S. Navy, Stauffacher began his career working for The Dow Chemical Company as a process engineer. While at Dow, he initially worked in manufacturing before transferring to Texas to focus on power plant support in the regulatory area in 1984. Initial work in this area included avoided cost rules, interconnection procedures and transmission arrangements for industrial power producers. Stauffacher served in leadership roles in regional and national trade groups that advocated for opening the power generation business to new non-utility entrants. During his nearly 30 years of experience in various segments of the industry, John testified before numerous state and federal agencies on power market issues. On the industrial consumer side, he represented The Dow Chemical Company in its role as a major industrial consumer and co-generator. While Director of Government and Regulatory Affairs for independent power producer Destec Energy, he assumed a leadership role in numerous regional and national trade groups that advocate competitive energy market structures. Later asVice President of RegulatoryAffairs for Dynegy Inc., Stauffacher was elected to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Board of Directors (1999-2002) where he represented independent generators and chaired both the Board Governance committee and By-laws committee. He also served as the ERCOT representative on the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) Board of Directors. In these various roles, Stauffacher provided a strong voice for competitive solutions to emerging market structures.