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July 16, 2023 | Tom Ballard

Governor Bill Lee names members of Tennessee Nuclear Energy Advisory Council

East Tennesseans captured more than half of the appointments.

On the same day that the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council hosted its annual “TVA Lunch and Learn” that focused on small modular reactors, Governor Bill Lee appointed a number of East Tennesseans to the Tennessee Nuclear Energy Advisory Council.

The group was created by Executive Order 101 that is designed to position Tennessee as a national leader for nuclear energy innovation and advancement, and its formation follows approval by the General Assembly earlier this year of the Governor’s request for $50 million to incentivize nuclear development and job growth in Tennessee.

In fact, by our count, 12 of the 22 members hail from East Tennessee communities (see news release here). That’s not surprising given the historical prominence of nuclear energy in the region and the developments that are occurring around Oak Ridge.

“Tennessee can lead America’s energy independence and deliver continued economic growth with safe, reliable, and clean nuclear energy for the future,” said Gov. Lee. “I am confident that these appointees will use their unique industry expertise to ensure that Tennessee is the top state for nuclear energy companies to invest and succeed, creating quality jobs and greater opportunity for Tennesseans.”

In alphabetical order, those from East Tennessee are:

  • Tracy Boatner, President of the East Tennessee Economic Council (Workforce Development Representative);
  • Terry Frank, Mayor of Anderson County (Local Government Representative);
  • Michelle Amante-Harstine, Field Representative for Third District U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (Member At-Large);
  • Hash Hashemian, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Analysis and Measurement Services Corporation in Knoxville (Nuclear Industry Representative);
  • Wes Hines, Department Head of Nuclear Engineering at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (Higher Education Representative);
  • Steve Jones of Clinton (Member-At-Large);
  • Don Moul, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at the Tennessee Valley Authority in Knoxville (TVA Representative);
  • Ken Rueter, President and CEO of UCOR in Oak Ridge (Member-At-Large);
  • Jeff Smith, Interim Director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL Representative);
  • Jennifer Stone, Area Office Manager of Thompson Engineering Inc. in Knoxville (Energy Production Representative);
  • State Senator Ken Yager (Lieutenant Governor Appointee); and
  • Loong Yong, President of Spectra Tech in Oak Ridge (Congressional Delegation Designee)

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