A new Chairman and Executive Non-Director have been appointed to the Horizon Power Board.

Western Australian Minister for Energy, Ben Wyatt, has announced Stephen Edwell as the new Chairman of Horizon Power with Kylie Chamberlain joining as a Non-Executive Director.

Mr Edwell replaces Ian Mickel, who has served as Chairman since 11 November 2014.

With more than 30 years working in and for the public sector, Mr Edwell brings a wealth of experience specialising in market design, regulation and economic and utility reform projects.

“I look forward to Stephen and Kylie continuing the good work of the Horizon Power Board as we approach an exciting time for the sector,” Mr Wyatt said.

“I am aware of the lack of regional representation on the board and will look to address this in future appointments.

“I would like to thank Ian and Jeanette for all their hard work on the board of Horizon Power.”

Appointed as the inaugural full-time chair of the Australian Energy Regulator, Mr Edwell has a strong background in developing and implementing electricity market reforms.

Ms Chamberlain replaces Professor Jeanette Hacket, and has more than 20 years of executive experience in banking and finance, with a broad exposure to a wide variety of businesses and market cycles.

Horizon Power Managing Director, Frank Tudor, said Mr Edwell is well respected in the energy industry in Western Australia and he looked forward to working with Ms Chamberlain.

He said he wanted to pay a special tribute to Mr Mickel and Professor Hacket who had made a major contribution to the business during its most transformational phase.

Mr Mickel first joined Horizon Power as a Non-executive Director on 1 May 2011.

“Ian was instrumental in guiding our strategic direction which culminated in the achievement of a reduction in our subsidy from government of $100 million a year 16 months ahead of schedule,” Mr Tudor said.

“He was also on the ground actively supporting Horizon Power and his community when the Esperance bushfires devastated the region in 2015, claiming lives, property and livestock.

“He championed our focus on innovation which included the rapid deployment of the first utility-grade stand alone power systems in Esperance at the properties of customers at the end of long spur lines which were burned down in the fires.

“The installation of advanced meters across our network, which is allowing the innovation we currently deliver customers in the form of new payment plans and energy efficiency apps, was another significant achievement.”

A highlight for Mr Mickel was when he attended the graduation ceremony of  four Remote Community Utilities Workers (RCUWs) in Broome in 2017. The RCUW trade was developed by Horizon Power to improve reliability and provide job opportunities in remote communities and has been registered nationally.

Ms Hacket, the former Vice Chancellor of Curtin University, was appointed to the board in October 2016.

“Her talent for building and utilising collaborative relationships was invaluable in helping us develop and implement new and refined products such as MyPower and Smart Sun. She was instrumental at the Audit and Risk Management Committee and Board in ensuring our governance framework remains strong and has been an advocate for ensuring the board maintains a professional approach to its work,” Mr Tudor said.

“I would like to thank Ian and Jeanette for all their hard work on the board of Horizon Power and I’m looking forward to working with the new board members.”

Both appointments will commence on 30 April 2018. 

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