Richard Cowart, a director and principal of the Regulatory Assistance Project, has been chosen to head up the Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Committee (EAC), which advises DOE on implementing federal energy legislation and modernizing the nation’s electricity delivery system.

Cowart chaired his first meeting of the EAC on Oct. 29. Its 27 members include state government officials, industry executives, consumer advocates and environmentalists who are charged with helping the department define long-range priorities and implement the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

“I am honored to head up this panel of extremely talented members. The task ahead of us is challenging, yet I am confident that working together we can help DOE adopt innovative policies that will guide our nation to a reliable, efficient and clean energy future,” said Cowart, who joined RAP in 1999 after serving 13 years with the Vermont Public Service Board. He currently directs European programs for RAP, leading RAP’s team in Brussels.

The EAC, first established in 2008, will make recommendations on a range of policy and technical matters, including smart grid deployment; renewables integration; transmission infrastructure and other emerging issues. It will also advise on coordination between federal, state and utility industry authorities on matters relating to supply and distribution.