May 2, 2017

Keith Collins to oversee Southwest Power Pool Market Monitoring Unit beginning June 1, 2017

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The five independent directors comprising Southwest Power Pool's (SPP) Oversight Committee voted April 13, 2017, to name Keith Collins the new executive director of SPP's Market Monitoring Unit (MMU), effective June 1, 2017.

Collins, previously the manager of monitoring and reporting at the California Independent System Operator (CAISO), was identified by an executive search consultant after a national search and recommended for the role to the SPP Oversight Committee based on both his in-depth knowledge of wholesale energy markets and his breadth of experience. He will replace MMU director Alan McQueen, who is retiring later this year after working with Collins during a transition period.

"SPP’s markets have benefitted tremendously from the oversight provided by the Market Monitoring Unit under Alan's leadership," said Joshua Martin, chairman of the SPP Oversight Committee. "We owe Alan a debt of thanks for delaying his retirement until we found the appropriate candidate to assume his responsibilities. We had an exceptional pool of candidates, and we’re fortunate to welcome Mr. Collins to this role — he will be a great fit at SPP. He has big shoes to fill, but has the experience and expertise to do so successfully."

At CAISO, Collins was responsible for identifying behavioral and market-design issues and addressing problems as quickly as possible. He led market analysis on areas of focus including energy and ancillary services markets, congestion revenue rights and virtual bids; led investigations into inappropriate market participant behavior; and worked closely with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) Office of Enforcement. From 2004 until 2010, Collins served at FERC in various roles including chief of their Electric Analysis Branch. Prior to that, he was employed by LECG, LLC, a leading international economics consulting firm concentrating in the field of energy economics.

"I am excited to work with SPP, its members and the Oversight Committee on the changing dynamics in the SPP markets," Collins said. "I believe my experiences will bring a unique perspective to these challenges. I look forward to building upon the great work of the Market Monitoring Unit and leading the team on the market issues we face today."

The SPP MMU is tasked with monitoring and reporting possible abuses of market power and potential gaming in the regional transmission organization's markets, monitoring market participants’ compliance with market rules, identifying market design flaws and recommending changes in design to improve the operation of markets and services for the benefit of consumers.

About Southwest Power Pool

Southwest Power Pool, Inc. manages the electric grid and wholesale energy market for the central United States. As a regional transmission organization, the nonprofit corporation is mandated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to ensure reliable supplies of power, adequate transmission infrastructure and competitive wholesale electricity prices. Southwest Power Pool and its diverse group of member companies coordinate the flow of electricity across 60,000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines spanning 14 states. The company is headquartered in Little Rock, Ark.

Derek Wingfield, (501) 614-3394,