April 18th, 2013
AUGUSTA, Maine – Summit Utilities, Inc. announced today that it has hired Michael Minkos as president of Summit Natural Gas of Maine, Inc. Minkos has more than 30 years of gas and electric utility experience and has held management positions in operations, energy supply and project development. He has held high level positions at New England natural gas companies that include Fitchburg Gas & Electric, Bay State Gas Company, Northern Utilities and Portland Natural Gas Transmission System (PNGTS). Minkos will begin his duties effective immediately.
“We are absolutely delighted to have Mike head up Summit Natural Gas of Maine,” stated Michael Earnest, chief executive officer of Summit Utilities, Inc., Summit Natural Gas of Maine’s parent company. “Mike’s diverse energy background and specific experience of running a natural gas company is a huge asset to the company. In addition, Mike’s expertise in overseeing similar projects in Maine is an incredible advantage to have.”
Minkos served as president/CEO of PNGTS Operating Co., LLC during the development, construction and initial operation of the PNGTS pipeline project completed in 1999. As president, he was responsible for all aspects of the $600 million project including marketing, financing, engineering, permitting, construction, and government and public relations. The Maine segments of the 295-mile pipeline stretched from Bethel south through Portland to Kittery and laterally from Bethel east to Jay.
Prior to joining Summit Natural Gas of Maine, Minkos also served as the general manager/CEO for Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company (MMWEC), a joint action agency responsible for the power supply requirements for member Massachusetts Electric Municipalities. The company had $1.2 billion of electric generation and transmission assets and annual revenues of $275 million. In that role, he developed long and short range strategic plans, set business and financial targets, and managed an annual operating budget of $10 million.
“I am delighted to return to Maine and lead Summit Natural Gas of Maine’s efforts in the Kennebec Valley and beyond. My decision to accept this position was based on my strong belief in Summit’s business model and commitment of financial resources. I am also confident that the foresight of the Maine regulatory agencies to allow and promote competition will provide a vehicle for natural gas distribution infrastructure to extend to new areas of Maine. We are going to provide an infrastructure in a relatively short period of time which will allow residential, commercial and industrial consumers access to a lower cost energy resource,” said Mike Minkos, president of Summit Natural Gas of Maine.
Minkos received a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering at University of Massachusetts Amherst and his masters of business administration from Western New England University.
Summit Natural Gas of Maine, Inc. will make an investment in the Kennebec Valley of approximately $350 million, creating an estimated 435 jobs, and plans to serve about 15,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers by its third year of operation. The project will start in the Augusta area and the pipeline will stretch north through Waterville and end in Madison. The company plans to begin construction by May 2013 and expects to be operational by early fall.
Summit Utilities, Inc., the parent company of Summit Natural Gas of Maine, operates 14 natural gas districts throughout Colorado and Missouri, and specializes in providing natural gas to areas that are either hard to serve or that aren’t being served. These districts represent approximately 36,000 customers and $260 million in assets, with approximately 400 miles of high-pressure steel main lines and 1,500 miles of polyethylene gas main lines.
Nancy Marshall Communications
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