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Parnell appoints 5 to Alaska Gasline Development Corp. board

Pat Forgey
Susan Bell, commissioner of the state Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, was appointed to the AGDC board. Loren Holmes photo

JUNEAU -- Gov. Sean Parnell has appointed five Alaskans, all with expertise in various aspect of the oil and gas business to the new board of the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation. By statute, two of Parnell's commissioners also serve on the board.

Previously, that corporation was governed by the Alaska Housing Corporation's Board. The new AGDC Board will retain Executive Director Dan Fauske, who resigned from his similar housing position to continue working on the gasline effort. The board members are:

• Al Bolea of Big Lake, currently adjunct faculty at the University of Alaska Anchorage. He has 40 years in various industry positions, including with BP Alaska.

• John Burns of Fairbanks, a former Alaska Attorney General.

• Dave Cruz of Palmer, president of Cruz Construction and related companies and a member of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance, an oil industry group.

• Drue Pearce, of Anchorage, a former Alaska Senate president and former Federal Coordinator for Alaska natural gas transportation projects.

• Dick Rabinow, a former President of Exxon Mobil Pipeline Co., and numerous other industry positions.

The two commissioners appointed to AGDC's board are:

• Susan Bell, commissioner of the Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.

• Dianne Blumer, Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, which provides job and skills training and other programs to boost jobs in Alaska.

Notably, two commissioners not on the AGDC board are those heading the Departments of Revenue and Natural Resources, two agencies that have been actively involved in natural gas development. Both those positions are excluded by law from the board so long as the state has a separate gas pipeline promotion effort underway as part of the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act.

Already in existence, AGDC was made a separate entity under legislation passed during the last legislative session.

That bill was sponsored by House Speaker Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski, and Rep. Mike Hawker, R-Anchorage, who praised the appointees as "well rounded," with both global and Alaska experience.

Contact Pat Forgey at pat(at)alaskadispatch.com