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For Immediate Release
For Immediate Release
Potomac Electric Power Company's Board of Directors elected John M. Derrick, Jr., 59, Chairman of the Board. Derrick will continue to serve as Chief Executive Officer and President.
In addition, the board elected Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President Dennis R. Wraase as Executive Vice President and CFO. Beverly Perry was elected Vice President, Government Affairs, and Ken Cohn was elected Vice President and Chief Information Officer.
As Chairman, Derrick succeeds Edward F. Mitchell, who held that position since 1992. Mitchell, who previously retired from a Pepco career that spanned four decades, will remain a Director and Chairman of the Board's Executive Committee.
Derrick praised Mitchell's leadership as Chairman during a period of significant change in the electric utility industry as it undergoes deregulation and consolidation. "Ed Mitchell's leadership kept Pepco on a steady course in preparing the company for competition," Derrick said. "Thanks to Ed's foresight, Pepco is poised to take advantage of new business opportunities that deregulation will bring."
The announcements were made following Pepco's annual meeting of shareholders yesterday. Mitchell, who has emphasized the importance of a smooth transition of leadership, said he steps down knowing the company is in capable hands. "Throughout his career, John Derrick demonstrated sound leadership and a strong commitment to customer and community service," Mitchell said. "These are key attributes for success in a competitive environment."
Derrick, a native Washingtonian, has been with Pepco since 1961, and has been a member of the Board of Directors since 1994. He holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Duke University. After service in the U.S. Navy, Derrick held various positions in engineering and customer service at Pepco. In 1981 he was elected Vice President-Customer Service and in 1989 he was named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. He became President in 1992 and Chief Executive Officer in 1997.
He belongs to several professional and business organizations, including the Maryland Chamber of Commerce, of which he is currently Chairman. He also serves on the executive committees of the Greater Washington Board of Trade and the Federal City Council. He is a past chairman of the metropolitan Washington YMCA; a member of the boards of Junior Achievement, Wesley Theological Seminary and Maryland Nature Conservancy; and is a trustee of the Washington Real Estate Investment Trust. He is active in Duke University affairs, serving on the Dean's Council of the School of Engineering.
Wraase, 55, Pepco's Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since 1996, will have added responsibility for Human Resources and Computer Services as Executive Vice President. He joined Pepco in 1974 as Manager of Financial Systems and held various financial positions until his election to Vice President and Comptroller in 1985. He was elected to the Board of Directors last year.
The election of Cohn, 52, to Vice President and Chief Information Officer, follows a 22-year career with Pepco during which time he built the company's Computer Services Department and leveraged technology to improve the company's productivity. A graduate of Brandeis University, he holds a master's degree in information technology from George Washington University. Cohn has led Pepco's Y2K compliance program since 1995.
Perry, General Manager of Government Relations, was elected Vice President, Government Affairs, in recognition of the critical importance of government affairs to the company's operations. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree from George Washington University and a law degree from Georgetown University in 1981. Perry joined the company as its chief lobbyist for federal and district matters in 1990. In 1994, she assumed responsibility for all of the company's government relations efforts.
Point of Contact:Robert A. Dobkin