Curtis Thayer appointed head of AEA - Must Read Alaska
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Saturday, November 28, 2020
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Curtis Thayer appointed head of AEA


Curtis Thayer, who announced recently that he was stepping down from the head of the Alaska Chamber of Commerce, has been named the executive director of the Alaska Energy Authority. He takes the place of Janet Reiser, who left last month.

The Alaska Energy Authority is an independent corporation governed by a board of directors with the mission to “reduce the cost of energy in Alaska.” AEA is the state’s energy office and lead agency for statewide energy policy and program development.

Whether building modern and code-compliant bulk fuel tank farms, upgrading to high-efficiency generators in rural powerhouse systems or integrating renewable energy projects, AEA emphasizes community-based project management. AEA’s core programs work to diversify Alaska’s energy portfolio, lead energy planning and policy, invest in Alaska’s energy infrastructure and provide rural Alaska with technical and community assistance.

AEA also manages the Renewable Energy Fund, the Emerging Energy Technology Fund, the Power Cost Equalization Program and various Energy Efficiency and Conservation Programs.  AEA provides grants and loans for qualified energy infrastructure projects and also owns energy infrastructure for the benefit of Alaskans.

Thayer was commissioner of the Department of Administration under Gov. Sean Parnell and has deep political ties throughout the state. He was also deputy commissioner of the Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, worked for the Alaska Gas Producers Pipeline Team, and ENSTAR natural gas company.

Thayer was born and raised in Anchorage and graduated from the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

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