COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 24, 2002 — Eric van der Walde, executive vice president – wholesale at American Electric Power (AEP), announced his resignation following AEP’s decision to limit its energy trading activities to focus on optimizing the value of the company’s energy assets.
Holly Koeppel will succeed van der Walde as head of AEP’s unregulated businesses, effective immediately. Koeppel, who had been senior vice president – Corporate Development and Strategy, will become executive vice president – Energy Services. Koeppel will report to Tom Shockley, AEP’s vice chairman and chief operating officer.
On Oct. 10, E. Linn Draper Jr., AEP’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, announced the company’s change in strategy. “This decision is motivated by fundamental changes in the energy trading business and is not a reflection on AEP’s trading organization,” Draper said. “Eric’s commercial skills and integrity have served us well in the difficult environment of the last year. We appreciate his contribution.”
Van der Walde is expected to remain with AEP in a consulting capacity as the company unwinds its trading operations.
Commenting on the change, van der Walde said, “While I’m disappointed in AEP’s change in strategy, I understand and support the decision and will use my best efforts to ensure an orderly transition.”
Koeppel, 44, has more than 20 years of experience managing both regulated and unregulated energy assets and businesses. She joined AEP in July 2000 and over the past 12 months has led the successful divestiture of more than $3 billion of non-strategic international assets, SEEBOARD and CitiPower.
Prior to joining AEP, Koeppel served for more than 15 years with Consolidated Natural Gas, Pittsburgh. She held a number of positions across the CNG system in the areas of regulatory policy and business development and led the development of key structured transactions in the gas trading business. Her last position with CNG was vice-president of Asia-Pacific operations based in Sydney, Australia.
Koeppel earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business from the Ohio State University. A native of Pittsburgh, she now resides in Upper Arlington, Ohio, with her husband and two children.
American Electric Power, an energy company with a balanced portfolio of energy assets, owns and operates more than 42,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the United States and select international markets and is the largest electricity generator in the U.S.
AEP is a wholesale marketer of energy commodities, utilizing its energy expertise and risk management skills to make optimal use of its generation, natural gas pipeline systems, natural gas storage, coal mines and inland barge fleet. AEP is also one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, with almost 5 million customers linked to AEP’s 11-state electricity transmission and distribution grid. The company is based in Columbus, Ohio.
News releases and other information about AEP can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.aep.com/ .