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Brooklynite, energy services professional Rory Christian appointed as chair of Public Service Commission

September 30, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday announced the designation of Rory M. Christian, a Brooklyn resident who began his career with KeySpan Energy, as chair of the Public Service Commission and chief executive officer of the Department of Public Service, the staff arm of the commission.

Christian began his career in the energy industry with KeySpan Energy, where he first served as a civil engineer, before transitioning to a role engaging government agencies operating in Long Island and New York City. KeySpan Energy, formed out of a merger of Brooklyn Union Gas and Long Island Lighting Company, was headquartered in Brooklyn and is now part of National Grid.

In his role with KeySpan, he was responsible for coordinating activities between the utility and government organizations, negotiating contracts, developing contingency plans and streamlining operations to satisfy both organizations’ operational needs.

Christian then transitioned to Exelon Energy, where he developed new products targeting public sector clientele and helped facilitate the creation of multiple partnerships and alliances.

He previously served as the director of energy finance and sustainability for the New York City Housing Authority, where he oversaw the authority’s then-$500M+ utility portfolio with the aim of reducing annual energy expenditures while achieving city, state and federally mandated greenhouse gas emissions reduction requirements.

More recently, he was the director of New York clean energy at the Environmental Defense Fund, where he provided strategy management, programming, business development and stakeholder collaboration for the Clean Energy program in NY. He oversaw a multidisciplinary team (economists, lawyers and engineers) to design, implement, and manage legislative and policy campaigns to lower the environmental impact of electricity production.

“I am pleased to designate Rory Christian chair of the PSC,” Hochul said. “His deep expertise on utility operations and regulation, environmental policy and community engagement make him uniquely qualified to help the state address the climate crisis while achieving PSC’s core mission to maintain reliable and affordable utility service.

“I have high expectations that under Rory’s leadership, the PSC will advance innovative energy and telecommunications policy, protect consumers, enhance utility reliability and resilience, foster economic development, and responsibly tackle the challenge of climate change,” she said.

Rory Christian said, “I am deeply honored to be designated chair of the commission and CEO of the department. I thank Governor Hochul and I look forward to devoting my time, my energy and talents to helping ensure New York meets its clean energy goals, through solutions that prioritize equity, reliability and resiliency.”

Christian graduated from the City College of New York, Grove School of Engineering with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering, and Baruch College with an MBA. He lives in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn with his family.

The Public Service Commission regulates the state’s electric, gas, steam, telecommunications, and water utilities as well as the cable industry. It consists of up to seven members, each appointed by the governor and confirmed by the State Senate for a term of six years or to complete an unexpired term of a former commissioner.

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