The Xcel Energy board of directors has named Richard C. (Dick) Kelly, 58, currently president and chief operating officer of Xcel Energy, as the new CEO. Kelly is a long-term employee of Xcel Energy and its predecessor companies, New Century Energies (NCE) and Public Service Co. of Colorado (PSCo).
Brunetti, 62, began his career in the electric and natural gas industry in 1964. He was chairman, president and CEO of Xcel Energy from August 2001 until October 2003, when Kelly was named president and COO. Prior to the 2000 merger that created Xcel Energy, Brunetti served as chairman, president and CEO of NCE, and prior to that as chairman, president and CEO of PSCo, Southwestern Public Service Co. and Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power Co. He is former president and CEO of Management Systems International, a Florida management consulting firm that he founded in 1991. Prior to that, he was executive vice president of Florida Power & Light Co.
Earlier this month, Brunetti completed a one-year term as chairman of Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the national trade organization of investor-owned utilities, serving on its board and executive committee. He also has been active in various professional and civic groups and on the National Petroleum Council, a key advisory body to the U.S. secretary of energy.
"I've had a great run," Brunetti said. "This is an exciting industry, there are always new challenges on the horizon, and there's never a dull moment. I'm pleased to have played a leadership role at Xcel Energy, as well as in the industry through the Edison Electric Institute."
In discussing Kelly's succession to the CEO position, Brunetti noted that one of the most important duties of a CEO is to prepare for the future with training, development and apprentice programs for employees. "Development and succession planning have been high priorities for me for the last several years," he said.
"Xcel Energy is on a strong and stable course, with a capable senior management team in place. I have the utmost respect for Dick Kelly and his capabilities, and the time is right for me to turn over the leadership reins to him. He has earned the respect of investors, regulators, customers and employees, and I know that under his able guidance, Xcel Energy will have a successful future," Brunetti said.
Kelly earned a bachelor of science degree in accounting and a master of business administration degree from Regis University in Denver. He attended the University of Colorado's Executive Education Conference and the University of Michigan's Public Utility Executive Program. He is a member of the board of trustees of the Science Museum of Minnesota and a board member of the Minneapolis Downtown Council and Colorado Concern.
Xcel Energy is a major U.S. electricity and natural gas company, with operations in 10 Western and Midwestern states. Xcel Energy provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services to 3.2 million electricity customers and 1.7 million natural gas customers through its regulated operating companies. In terms of customers, it is the fourth-largest combination natural gas and electricity company in the nation. Company headquarters are located in Minneapolis. More information is available at www.xcelenergy.com.