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NiSource, Columbia Pipeline Officials Announced

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After announcing plans to separate its natural gas pipeline division, NiSource Inc. has announced a number of new leadership appointments for the two energy companies.

In a Dec. 3 statement, NiSource named the officials who will guide Columbia Pipeline Group Inc. (CPG) and NiSource following the planned separation in mid-2015.

In September 2014, NiSource announced plans to separate its natural gas pipeline and related businesses into a stand-alone publicly traded company, CPG, with NiSource becoming a pure-play regulated natural gas and electric utilities company.

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Key leadership appointments for CPG, expected to be effective at the time of separation, include:

  • Robert C. Skaggs Jr., currently president and CEO of NiSource, is expected to become CEO of CPG.
  • Stephen P. Smith, currently NiSource executive vice president and chief financial officer, is expected to hold the same positions for CPG.
  • Glen L. Kettering, currently executive vice president and group CEO for CPG, is expected to assume the new role of president of CPG. Other current members of the CPG senior leadership team also are expected to remain with CPG.

The company also announced expected key post-separation leadership appointments for NiSource:

  • Joseph Hamrock, currently executive vice president and group CEO of NiSource’s Gas Distribution business unit, will become CEO of NiSource.
  • Jim L. Stanley, executive vice president and group CEO for Northern Indiana Public Service Co. (NIPSCO), is expected to serve in the new role of chief operating officer for NiSource, overseeing a variety of functions, including capital program management, major projects and customer and commercial operations.
  • Violet G. Sistovaris, currently NiSource senior vice president and chief information officer, is expected to become executive vice president for NIPSCO, with responsibility for electric operations and regulatory, external affairs and communications functions. Among those reporting to Sistovaris will be NIPSCO president Kathleen O’Leary.

A CFO for NiSource is expected to be named in early 2015, following completion of an internal and external candidate review.

“With proven, experienced leaders in place at both companies, NiSource and CPG will be well positioned to thrive and grow as independent entities,” said Richard L. Thompson, NiSource board of directors chairman. “As demonstrated by their strong leadership track records, Bob Skaggs, Joe Hamrock and their respective teams are ideally suited to provide the clarity of vision, depth of experience and strength of character needed to execute on the distinct and well-established growth strategies of both NiSource and CPG.”

As previously announced, NiSource’s corporate headquarters will continue to be in Merrillville, Indiana, while CPG will remain headquartered in Houston. Additional leadership appointments for both companies will be announced prior to the time of separation.

NiSource at the same announced plans for initial appointments to the board of directors of Columbia Pipeline Group expected to take effect immediately prior to the planned separation of the companies.

Prior to the separation, Skaggs is expected to become chairman of the board for CPG. Other current members of NiSource’s board expected to join the CPG board include independent board members Sigmund L. Cornelius, Marty R. Kittrell, W. Lee Nutter, Deborah S. Parker and Teresa A. Taylor. None of these directors is expected to continue to serve on the NiSource board following the separation.

Expected to continue serving on the NiSource board following the separation are current independent NiSource board members Thompson, who is expected to continue serving as chairman, Richard A. Abdoo, Michael E. Jesanis, Aristides S. Candris and Carolyn Y. Woo. In addition, it is expected that Joe Hamrock will be named to the NiSource board when he assumes CEO responsibilities for the company.

“We are privileged to have highly experienced and respected individuals prepared to serve on the respective boards of both NiSource and CPG,” Thompson said. “These boards will each bring a depth of experience, a range of perspectives and a continuity of focus vital to the distinct opportunities and challenges of each company. I am confident these Boards will provide sound independent judgment and guidance to each company’s management teams as they work to build and grow these companies.”

These plans are contingent upon the re-election of members of the NiSource board at the company’s 2015 annual meeting. NiSource also plans to recruit additional members for each board over the coming months.

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