ATLANTA Southern Company announced today that its board of directors has made Gale Klappa a senior vice president. Klappa also has been named an executive vice president of Southern Company Services, the subsidiary that supports Southern Companys domestic and international affiliates.
In October, Klappa was named Southern Companys chief strategic officer in a move designed to strengthen strategic planning for the rapidly growing energy company. Klappa most recently served as president of the North America Group of Southern Energy Inc., a Southern Company subsidiary.
Gale has a strong sense about where were headed as a company and is able to answer the tough questions challenging our business, said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Bill Dahlberg. He is helping to shape the future success of Southern Company.
Klappa, 49, was president and chief executive officer of South Western Electricity (SWEB) in Bristol, England, from 1995 until December 1998, when he returned to the United States to be president of the North America Group. SWEB, which Southern Energy owns in partnership with PP&L Resources and whose name has been changed to Western Power Distribution, distributes electricity to 1.3 million customers in southwest England. Under Klappas leadership, SWEB accomplished a major turnaround in operations and financial performance. In the area of customer service, SWEB went from worst to first in a national ranking of customer satisfaction.
From 1992 to 1995, Klappa served as senior vice president of marketing at Georgia Power, Southern Companys largest subsidiary. He also directed the companys efforts in economic development and electric vehicle research. His 25-year career in the energy industry has also included managerial assignments in external affairs, pricing, forecasting, consumer research and sales to commercial, industrial and residential customers.
Klappa earned a bachelors degree in mass communications from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1972.
Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is an international energy company with more than $35 billion in assets through regional utilities and operations around the world. It is the largest producer of electricity in the United States and one of the worlds leading independent power producers. Based in Atlanta, Southern Company is the parent firm of Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric. Through its Southern Energy Inc. subsidiary, Southern Company supplies electricity in 10 countries on four continents and has a growing presence in North America with assets in the Northeast, the Midwest, California and Texas. Southern Company also provides energy-related marketing, trading and technical services and offers Southern LINC wireless telecommunications.