The Wind Coalition maintains a robust team to represent the interests of the wind energy industry with the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). Please, contact any of them whenever they may be of help.
Jeff Clark has worked within the public affairs arena for nearly 30 years in both public and private capacities. With experience extending from the nation’s statehouses to the nation’s capital, he has developed a unique expertise, revitalizing and rebuilding governmental affairs teams to efficiently and aggressively deliver results for their clients.
In his current role, he is Executive Director of The Wind Coalition, the leading organization advocating for renewable energy within the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). Jeff manages a team of technical and policy experts working to educate the public and lawmakers on renewable energy and to support state policies that will facilitate wind and solar energy’s continued development and integration.
Prior to joining the Coalition, he was Senior Vice President of Governmental Affairs at The American Electronics Association (AeA/TechAmerica) where helped to develop and implement the organization’s technology-focused “innovation agenda” in the states. He also directed the group’s electronics recycling, manufacturing materials, and energy infrastructure programs.
Earlier in his career, he headed the regional office of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), representing 34,000 Texas small business owners before lawmakers in Texas and in Washington. Recognized for his work promoting free enterprise, he was twice appointed by the Bush Administration to serve on the United States Small Business Administration’s National Advisory Council, which he co-chaired.
Prior to NFIB, he was a Principal at Public Strategies, Inc. (PSi, now Hill and Knowlton Strategies) where he managed research, policy initiatives, communications campaigns, and crisis response for clients of the firm.
Raised by Texans in the suburbs of Washington, DC, Jeff is a 6th generation Texan and returned to West Texas as a college student. He attended Abilene Christian University where he studied Political Science. He is currently pursuing a Master of Science candidate in energy policy and climate science at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC. He and his wife, Elisabeth, reside in Austin and have two teenaged daughters.
SPP Policy Director
Steve Gaw, former Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives and former Chair of the Missouri Public Service Commission, currently consults with the Wind Coalition focusing on policy issues regarding electricity within the Southwest Power Pool region and matters of national interest that impact the advancement of wind energy. He was one of the founding directors of the Organization of MISO States (OMS) and the SPP Regional State Committee. He served in every officer position with the OMS including the office of President.
Steve has been a speaker and moderator in regional, national, and international forums on energy policy dealing with both electricity and natural gas. As Speaker of the Missouri House for five years, Steve established a reputation of improving public access to the legislature, leading the Missouri House to broadcast sessions live on the internet, the first in the nation to do so. He was recognized for passing legislation improving education, enhancing public safety, increasing access to health care and cutting taxes for which he received numerous awards. While on the Public Service Commission of Missouri he was noted for his in depth inquiry into complex issues, opening investigations into the release of protected consumer records and the activities of rating agencies in rate cases, and listening to the concerns of consumers.
Steve is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Truman State University with a BS in Physics and has a law degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Sarah Cost Pettus
Sarah Cost Pettus is the operations manager for The Wind Coalition, responsible for all finance and membership related activities. She also serves as the SPP Coordinator, interfacing with Wind Coalition consultants, SPP staff, and member companies working on issues within the Southwest Power Pool.
A native of San Marcos, Texas, Sarah is a graduate of Texas State University where she studied nutrition and business. She and her husband Lance live in Austin and are proud new parents.
Public Policy Consultant – Texas
Randy C. Cain represents clients before the Texas Legislature in the areas of utility law, transportation, municipal affairs, health care law, and other matters. He is recognized in the 2007, 2008, and 2009 Editions of The Best Lawyers in America in the specialty of Government Relations Law.
Prior to forming his own firm in 2004, Mr. Cain was a partner at Brown McCarroll, LLP. Before a merger with Brown McCarroll in 2003, he was a partner at the Austin law firm of Hilgers & Watkins, PC. Mr. Cain started the Legislative Section at Hilgers & Watkins in December 1994. Prior to that, in 1994 Mr. Cain served as general counsel to the Texas Secretary of State. As general counsel he was chief legal advisor to the Secretary on all matters within agency jurisdiction, including election law, agency administration, ethics, and statutory filings.
In 1993-94, Mr. Cain served as deputy to the Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. As a member of Secretary Bentsen’s legislative staff at the Treasury Department, he worked on the passage of NAFTA, budget reconciliation and banking regulatory consolidation, among other issues. Mr. Cain met with congressional staff on treasury legislative initiatives, set up meetings with members of Congress and prepared legislative briefings for the Secretary of the Treasury.
Before his work at the Treasury, Mr. Cain was legislative director in Washington, D.C. for Senator Lloyd Bentsen during 1992-93. He directed a legislative staff of twelve persons. He supervised preparation of legislation, floor statements, and the answering of constituent mail.
Prior to his work in Washington, Mr. Cain was the City of Dallas assistant city attorney for legislative affairs, representing the interests of the city council and city manager of the nation’s eighth largest city. He was the city’s legislative liaison with both state and federal legislatures and agencies. In the 1991 session, the Texas legislature passed into law nine bills that were Dallas city priorities.
Before his work in Dallas, Mr. Cain practiced law for three years with Hilgers & Watkins. The majority of his practice consisted of civil trial work, including most areas of commercial litigation and consumer law. He also had an administrative law practice and a legislative practice, and in the 1989 Texas legislative session, was a contract lobbyist for the City of Dallas.
He is a 1986 graduate of Baylor University School of Law, a 1978 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Business Administration, and a graduate of Pampa High School in Pampa, Texas.
Laura Brookins Fleet
Director of Public Affairs – Oklahoma
Laura Brookins Fleet is a practicing attorney, government relations consultant and registered lobbyist in the state of Oklahoma. Mrs. Fleet’s areas of legal practice cover a broad range of administrative and regulatory matters for companies and agencies. In addition, she has assisted in many successful grassroots campaigns, has served as a resource for industry lobbyists and has been involved in many issue-specific media campaigns during her career.
Prior to joining the Wind Coalition, she has served as a compliance analyst in the legal and regulatory department for a national health plan. Additionally, Ms. Fleet has served as an Executive Director and lobbyist for several not-for-profit trade associations and legal counsel for a local government consulting firm. Her extensive experience in local and state government has made her proficient in drafting legislation, and rules and in developing media campaigns for her clients.
Mrs. Fleet received her Juris Doctorate from Oklahoma City University School of Law and is a graduate of Midwestern State University where she earned her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. She is admitted to practice law in Oklahoma state courts and the United States Court for the Western District of Oklahoma.
Mrs. Fleet has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America from 2009 to 2013.
Public Policy Director – Nebraska
The Wind Coalition’s efforts in Nebraska are led by veteran lobbyist Richard Lombardi and his company American Communications Group, Inc.
Over the past three decades, every piece of Nebraska reneable energy legislation, enacted by the nation’s only Unicameral Legislature, has had the involvement of Rich Lombardi. This expertise encompasses and includes statutes which eventually created the Nebraska Energy Office, state solar easements, renewable tax credits, regulatory incentives for renewables and specific wind energy legiatlion passed since 2008 due to the wind industry’s committment to advocacy in the state.
In the nation’s only public power state, Rich served as a member of the Board of Directors of the lincoln Electric System, the publically-owned energy system serving Nebraska’s capital city. During this tenure, Lombardi was elected Chairman of the Power Supply Committee.
Celebrating more than 26 years of service, american Communications Gruop, Inc. (ACG) provides policy research, political consulting and advoccy services to The Wind Coalition’s members by navigating the unique political landscape of Nebraska. Through the building of a deep network of advocates, ACG deploys an array of communications to better move the wind interests of the state.
From organizing a statewide wind energy educational tour on behalf of AWEA to organizing polling for a collaboration of TWC, AWEA and the Energy Foundation to the annual Nebraska Wind Conference Planning efforts, Lombardi and Co are the voice for wind energy industry advocacy in Nebraska.
Technical and Regulatory Consultant – ERCOT
Walter Reid is currently representing the Wind Coalition at ERCOT as well as providing support for proceedings at the Public Utility Commission of Texas. Walter is also consulting with a number of wind-power developers concerning ERCOT market rules and assisting with the business aspects of various contracting issues. He was heavily involved in the development of both the zonal and the nodal market rules for ERCOT and continues to help update those rules.
Before Walter starting consulting in 1995 he worked for the Lower Colorado River Authority for 25 years in a variety of engineering, managerial, and executive management positions. Walter was Executive Director of Electric Operations for several years in charge of all of LCRA’s transmission, generation, fuels, and contracting activities. He continues to provide consulting support to the LCRA today.
Mr. Reid received his degree in Electrical Engineering from Tulane University and spent six years in the Navy Nuclear Submarine service before coming to Austin.
Public Policy Director – Kansas
Kimberly Svaty has successfully planned, implemented and directed public affairs activities for nearly two decades with clients ranging from Fortune 5 to Fortune 1000 companies, non-profit organizations and cause groups. Kimberly’s interests in the political realm were nurtured as a page in the Kansas Statehouse. Later, she worked on Washington D.C.’s Capitol Hill serving the Chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee. She returned to her Midwestern roots serving at the Dole Institute of Politics in Lawrence, Kansas while completing her M.A. in International Political Economy from the University of Kansas.
Kimberly has directed governmental affairs divisions across multi-state regions, managed state and federal political action committees and recruitment and led Public Affairs departments. Gencur Svaty Public Affairs is structured to create strategies and campaigns beyond Statehouse legislative work and fundraising. For nearly two decades, GSPA has connected people, promoted ideas and grown communities through an evolving suite of technology, marketing, design, polling and campaign services. Kimberly’s love of good public policy and significant experience navigating–and influencing– the political process drives her.
A seventh-generation urban girl, Kimberly wed a fifth-generation farm boy. Kimberly and husband Joshua, formerly Kansas Secretary of Agriculture and a seven-year State Representative, have two young sons, a daughter, and operate Free State Farms – a diversified crop and livestock farm in Ellsworth, Kansas.