Salem, OR—Governor Kate Brown today appointed Janine Benner as Acting Director of the Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE). Benner currently serves as ODOE's Assistant Director, where she leads the Planning and Innovation team that works on statewide energy policies, including renewable energy, resiliency, and efficiency.
“Janine has a wealth of experience in management, energy policy, and climate change,” Governor Brown said. “ODOE is responsible for critical components of Oregon's response to the threats of climate change, and Janine will provide a steady hand during this transition to support the department's efforts and diverse energy programs.”
An Oregon native, Benner joined ODOE in February 2017 after more than 16 years in Washington, D.C. Before ODOE, Benner was appointed by President Obama to the U.S. Department of Energy, where she was the Associate Assistant Secretary at the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and the Deputy Assistant Secretary for House Affairs. Prior to that, she served as an advisor to Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauer for over a decade, most recently as his Deputy Chief of Staff. Benner earned her Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University.
Benner will take over as ODOE director on October 30, 2017, replacing outgoing director Michael Kaplan, who has accepted a position as Chief Operating Officer at the Oregon Treasury. Governor Brown thanked Kaplan for his service. “Michael has been a tireless champion of putting the Oregon Department of Energy on a path to success. I appreciate his commitment to accountability, problem-solving, and good governance.”
The Governor's Office will announce details about the recruitment process for a permanent director later this fall.
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