Current and past commissioners from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), energy titans, leaders in the energy bar, and Tulane Law and Business professors will provide their insights into the future of energy law at the Tulane Energy Law Forum in October.
The Tulane Energy Forum is a new conference organized jointly by Tulane Law School and the A.B. Freeman School of Business which will be hosted annually as a marquee event for the energy bar and industry.The conference will be held Oct. 26-27 at the Renaissance Hotel in New Orleans and will draw dozens of experts in the fields of energy and energy law and highlight the latest developments and trends in an industry that has captured global attention as the world grapples with war overseas, climate change and other challenges.
The keynote speaker for the forum on Oct. 26 is Tulane alum and Texas energy leader Bobby Tudor (L’87). Tudor is the retired Founder and CEO of Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co. the Texas-based energy-sector investment bank, and current CEO of Artemis Energy Partners and a leader of the Houston Energy Transition Coalition. Tudor was formerly a Partner at Goldman Sachs, leading the firm’s worldwide energy practice. He is a globally-recognized leader in energy investment and banking, who is leading efforts to cut emissions and invest in renewables.
On Oct. 27, a panel of former FERC Commissioners will headline the forum including Commissioner James Danly, former Chairman Joe Kelliher and former Commissioners Suedeen Kelly and Mike Naeve.
Commissioner Danly was nominated and confirmed in 2020. He served as FERC Chairman from 2020-2021. Prior to serving at FERC, Danly served as general counsel to FERC and was a member of the energy regulation and litigation group at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, LLP. Danly is a former U.S. Army officer who served two tours in Iraq, first with an infantry company and then on staff at the Multi-National Force—Iraq, receiving a Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
Commissioner Kelliher served as FERC Chairman from 2005-2009 during which time he efficiently implemented the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the largest expansion of FERC regulatory authority since the 1930s. After leaving FERC, Commissioner Kelliher served as the Executive Vice President in Federal Regulatory Affairs for NextEra Energy, Inc., the largest electricity company in the United States. He now is the Co-Leader of the Energy Practice Group for FedArb, a leading dispute resolution firm.
Commissioner Kelly served as a FERC Commissioner from 2003-2009. Prior to being confirmed on FERC, Kelly served as Chairwoman of the New Mexico Public Service Commission, regulatory counsel for the California Independent System Operator (CAISO), and a lawyer for the Natural Resources Defense Council and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Kelly is now a Partner at Jenner & Block where she represents clients in the electric and natural gas industries on business, regulatory, litigation, enforcement and policy matters, such as electricity and gas markets, renewable energy, electricity transmission, off-shore wind, energy projects on Native American lands, and much more.
Commissioner Naeve served as a FERC Commissioner from 1985-1988 during which time he played a leading role in developing FERC policies for restructuring the electric power and natural gas industries. Naeve worked as a Partner for more than 35 years in the energy regulation and litigation group at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, LLP, representing numerous clients in a variety of federal and state regulatory proceedings and restructuring transactions. Naeve has testified before Congress on various matters ranging from electric industry restructuring to antitrust issues in the energy sector. Naeve currently is the Chairman of the Board of Total Energy Holdings USA, Inc., the parent holding company for Total Energies’ U.S. operating companies.
In addition to these headliner events, the forum will have a host of panels covering all things energy – from carbon capture and solar energy technologies to renewables to lessons learned from the devastation of wildfires in Lahaina.
"The Forum brings leading voices from academia, business, law and government together to discuss how we can solve the most pressing energy issues we face," said Tulane Energy Law Center Director Frederic Sourgens. "It stands in the long Tulane tradition to offer constructive solutions to pressing problems in the sector."
The conference will also allow for the public introduction of international energy law scholar Sourgens (L'05), who is the new James McCulloch Chair in Energy Law and the Law School’s Innovative Center for Energy Law. Sourgens is not only a Tulane Law alumnus but he also is an international expert in dispute resolution, transnational law, and energy transition and has published extensively on the subject. As Center Director, Sourgens leads a uniquely-positioned law school think tank that is deeply influential in the regional oil and gas industry, and which has established itself as a voice at the center of the nation’s transition to renewable energy.
“Energy is of vital importance to the world. Fueling transportation, powering buildings, producing light, heat, warmth – it cannot be overstated: everyone needs energy,” said Interim Dean Sally Richardson. “But energy and energy production are not done in a vacuum. There are local, national, and international implications of energy law, energy production, and energy transition. Given Tulane Law’s strength in international law and in environmental law, Tulane makes a perfect hub for an internationally influential Energy Law Center, having leading experts in the field like Freddy at the helm, and hosting marquee events like the Energy Law Forum. It is truly a great time to be a Tulanian if you are interested in energy law and the future of energy production and transition.”