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Gov. Hickenlooper selects environmental attorney Joshua Epel to Public Utilities Commission Chair

Thursday, April 14, 2011 -- Gov. John Hickenlooper nominated Joshua Epel to Chair of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.

Epel is now the Assistant General Counsel at DCP Midstream, where he is oversees all environmental, public health and safety matters for the company. He is also responsible for multiple areas of operations and helped to develop the company’s climate change strategy. DCP Midstream is the largest midstream natural gas gathering and processing company in the United States.

Epel’s environmental work led him to be appointed to the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission (OGCC), where he currently serves as chair, a position he will vacate if confirmed for the PUC. As OGCC chair, Epel was instrumental in streamlining business and regulatory processes to strike a balance between business, regulation and the environment.

“Joshua Epel brings a broad range of experience in energy and environmental policy,” Hickenlooper said. “His strong business, engineering and legal background give him a strong foundation for leading the Colorado Public Utilities Commission. Joshua is also someone with a deep social conscience and a proven record of civic engagement. He’ll be independent-minded, objective and collaborative; all qualities important for the PUC.”

Prior to DCP Midstream, Epel was at Gablehouse and Epel, (1998-2002) where he worked on environmental matters and focused primarily on the Federal and State Clean Air Act. He represented a broad spectrum of interests and his manufacturing clients included the cement, titanium, oil and gas, refining, utility and printing and publishing industries. He served as the acting Special Attorney General to the Colorado Department of Transportation, and as the environmental counsel for several Colorado municipalities.

“I am truly honored to be selected by Gov. Hickenlooper to serve on the Colorado Public Utilities Commission,” Epel said. “This is a tremendous opportunity and I am looking forward to serving with the current commissioners on policies that will help Colorado remain a leader as a state to do business with, while protecting our environment and communities around the state.”

Epel was one of the authors of the Colorado Voluntary Clean up Act and the Colorado Air Pollution Prevention and Control Act. He has a strong public service background including serving as the Chairman of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, the New Mexico Climate Change Advisory Council, representing the State of Colorado on the Public Advisory Committee of the Grand Canyon visibility Transport Commission, member on and Chair of the Mobile Sources Sub-Committee of the Regional Air Quality Council and member of the Denver Metropolitan Lead Planning Agency.

He attended the University of Michigan, McGill University, William James College and has a law degree from Franklin Pierce Law Center in New Hampshire.