The board of Southern Company (NYSE: SO) today announced the appointment of Dr. Ernest Moniz, the former United States Secretary of Energy and renowned physicist, as an independent director effective March 1, 2018. He will stand for election to the board of directors by stockholders at the 2018 annual meeting. Dr. Moniz will serve on the Operations, Environmental and Safety Committee and the Nominating, Governance and Corporate Responsibility Committee of the board. He also will serve on the Business Security Subcommittee, which focuses on cyber and physical risks across the Southern Company system.
"Ernie Moniz enhances our board by bringing a strong energy science and technology background together with broad expertise in energy and environmental policy, which will be invaluable as we continue to develop innovative solutions to shape America's energy future," said Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning.
"I have long admired Southern Company for its innovative approach to research and development within the clean energy space, and look forward to joining the board," said Moniz. "Tom is an industry leader and I'm eager to work with him and the entire board in helping Southern advance at a time of great change in the energy world."
Dr. Moniz served as United States Secretary of Energy from 2013 to early 2017. As Secretary, he advanced energy technology innovation, nuclear security and strategic stability, cutting-edge capabilities for the American scientific research community and environmental stewardship. He was a member of the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology from 2009 to 2013 and received the Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Award in 2016.
Dr. Moniz currently is the chief executive officer and co-chair of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a non-profit organization dedicated to reducing the threat of nuclear, biological, radiological and chemical weapons, and chief executive officer of Energy Futures Initiative, a non-profit organization dedicated to driving innovation in energy technology, policy and business models.
Prior to his appointment as Secretary of Energy, Dr. Moniz was a faculty member at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for over four decades. He was the founding director of the MIT Energy Initiative and Director of the Laboratory for Energy and the Environment where he was a leader of multidisciplinary technology and policy studies on the future of nuclear power, coal, nuclear fuel cycles, natural gas and solar energy in a low-carbon world. Dr. Moniz is currently the Cecil and Ida Green Professor of Physics and Engineering Systems emeritus at MIT. Dr. Moniz also is a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Harvard Belfer Center.