Gov. Davis appoints former LADWP General Manager to new California power financing board

SACRAMENTO, Calif., August 14, 2001 — S. David Freeman, former head of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, will chair a five-person board that will oversee California’s first venture into building and running power plants.

Governor Gray Davis today announced the appointments of S. David Freeman as chair, and Sunne W. McPeak, John R. Stevens and Donald Vial as members of the Consumer Power and Conservation Financing Authority Board of Directors. They will serve along with California State Treasurer Phil Angelides.

The purpose of the California Consumer Power and Conservation Financing Authority is to ensure that the citizens of California have reliable, affordable electrical power, to ensure sufficient power reserves, to assure stability and rationality in California’s electricity market, to encourage energy efficiency and conservation and the use of renewable energy resources.

“The California Power Authority will ensure an adequate supply of energy and help dampen wholesale energy prices,” Governor Davis said. “These individuals will play a key role in the next stage of our progress towards energy independence. Their job is to supplement, not supplant private sector initiatives. I am thankful for their willingness to serve the people of California on this very important authority.”

S. David Freeman has served as Senior Energy Advisor to Governor Davis since January 2001. Prior to his appointment, Freeman served as General Manager for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, to which he was nominated by then-Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan. Freeman’s career in electric and water utility industries spans five decades, and includes high-level positions with the New York Power Authority, Tennessee Valley Authority, Lower Colorado River Authority and Sacramento Municipal Utility District.

At all of these agencies, he established energy conservation and efficiency projects. His previous experience in government includes positions as energy advisor to President Carter and energy consultant to the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee. Freeman earned a bachelor of science degree from Georgia Tech, and a juris doctorate degree from the University of Tennessee Law School.

Ms. Sunne W. McPeak, of San Francisco, is President and CEO of Bay Area Council, an organization that aims to sustain business leadership that fosters excellence in public policy, in order to promote economic prosperity and quality of life in the Bay Area. In August 2000, Governor Davis appointed her to the Advisory Drought Planning Panel. Ms. McPeak served as a Contra Costa County Supervisor from 1978 to 1994, and has worked extensively on environmental and water policy issues. She also serves as Vice Chair of the CalFed Bay-Delta Advisory Council, and is on the Board of Trustees for the Bay Area School Reform Collaborative. She earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a master of public health degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

John R. Stevens, of Carmichael, is the former Staff Director for the Office of Governor Davis. During the last six months of 2000, Stevens advised the Governor on energy, specifically in regards to streamlining the licensing of new generating facilities and promoting conservation. Prior to his service on the Governor’s staff, Stevens was the Chief of Staff to Assembly Speaker Antonio Villaraigosa. Positions prior to that include Chief Consultant to the Speaker and Chief Consultant of the Assembly Transportation Committee. He has also worked for Democratic Assembly Leader Richard Katz, Orange County Supervisor Gen. Thomas F. Riley, and AVCO Community Developers. Stevens earned a bachelor of science degree from California Polytechnic State University, Pomona.

Donald Vial, of San Rafael, is the Chairman of the California Foundation on the Environment and the Economy. He began his career as a Research Director/Economist for the California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.

After more than a decade there, Vial became Chairman of the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. In 1975, he took the position of Director of the California Department of Industrial Relations, where he stayed until his appointment to the California Public Utilities Commission in 1983. During his term, Vial held the office of President of the Commission, and served as a Commissioner until 1989. He earned bachelor and master of arts degrees from the University of California, Berkeley.

These positions require Senate confirmation.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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