SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) announced Tuesday that the utility appointed Patricia “Patti” Poppe as the new chief executive officer.

Effective Jan. 4, 2021, Poppe will take over from interim CEO William Smith, who took over from past CEO William Johnson in June of this year.

Poppe currently serves as president and CEO of CMS Energy Corporation and its principal subsidiary, both in Michigan.

Poppe was appointed to that role in 2016, and has since been a leader in clean energy by implementing plans to reduce emissions, eliminate coal, and increase renewable energy, in addition to making efforts to save water, reduce landfill waste, and protect, enhance or restore land, according to PG&E.

Patricia “Patti” Poppe (LinkedIn)

“Patti is an exceptional leader with the experience, drive, and character to lead PG&E through its next chapter. She knows the utility industry top to bottom and has a deep understanding of what it takes to provide safe, reliable, affordable, and clean energy to millions of customers,” said Robert Flexon, chairman of PG&E’s Board of Directors.

Smith will remain on the PG&E Corp. and PG&E Co. Boards of Directors following Poppe’s arrival in January.

“I am honored by this appointment and look forward to working alongside PG&E’s 23,000 employees to deliver for our customers in Northern and Central California,” Poppe said. “As California’s largest utility, PG&E has the privilege of powering one of the world’s largest economies and the opportunity to help lead the state’s clean energy future. It also faces significant challenges.”

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