Pence names first woman to top utility regulatory post

Gov. Mike Pence has named the first woman to chair the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.

Carol Stephan, who was first appointed a commissioner earlier this year, will take over the post vacated by Jim Atterholt, who stepped down this month to become the governor’s chief of staff.

Pence called Stephan a “servant leader in every sense of the word” who has the vision and drive to lead the commission, which oversees regulated electric, gas and communications companies.

“Given her depth of knowledge and passion for the commission’s work, I am confident she will continue to strengthen the agency’s efforts and will work tirelessly to ensure the very best service for Hoosier utilities customers across the state,” he said.

Before becoming a commissioner, Stephan served as the agency’s assistant general counsel. She has also worked as general counsel for the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor, which represents customers in utility cases before the IURC.

She’s been the interim deputy commissioner and director of partner services for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and deputy attorney general in the bankruptcy/inheritance tax division in the attorney general’s office.

Stephan took her first action on Tuesday, naming IURC Commissioner Carolene Mays to serve as vice chair, a position she had assumed informally in recent years.

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