CHICAGO—In recognition for his work pioneering the first license renewal for a U.S. nuclear power plant, Christian H. Poindexter, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Constellation Energy Group, today received the industry's top individual award. Poindexter was presented with the William S. Lee Award for Industry Leadership at the Nuclear Energy Institute's (NEI) annual conference in Chicago.
The Calvert Cliffs license renewal is a milestone in the industry as the two-unit, Calvert County, Md., plant in late March became the first commercial U.S. nuclear power plant to receive a renewed operating license granting a 20-year extension to the original expiration dates. Poindexter spearheaded the license renewal process that evolved from the forward-looking, life-cycle management philosophy that the company developed in the late 1980s.
The company's innovative efforts to prolong the life of plant components ultimately led to the filing of a license renewal application with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in April 1998. The NRC conducted a 22-month, in-depth review that closely examined the safety and environmental record of the plant. The NRC's approval of Calvert Cliffs' operations and procedures—including submission of the 2,500-page application on CD-ROM—provided a template for other utilities seeking license renewal.
"Chris Poindexter's leadership in making Calvert Cliffs one of the best operating and safest plants led to the success of its license renewal effort. He has rendered an inestimable service to the industry as other utilities can follow his trailblazing efforts," said Earl Nye, chairman of the board of NEI and chairman of the board and chief executive of TXU, based in Dallas.
"The Calvert Cliffs model will pave the way for the license renewals of additional plants that will help satisfy America's energy needs well into the future."
License renewal applications for another six reactors are pending before the NRC, and utilities owning another 22 of the nation's 103 reactors have informed the NRC of their plans to apply for license renewals by the year 2003.
The William S. Lee Award for Industry Leadership was named in Lee's honor following his death in 1996. Lee, who was one of the industry's most vocal safety advocates in the aftermath of the 1979 Three Mile Island accident, was serving as chairman emeritus of Duke Power Co. when he died. Lee was a recipient of the industry's leadership award in 1995.
Poindexter joined Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. (now a subsidiary of Constellation Energy Group) in 1967 and was named chairman and chief executive officer in 1993. He was elected to these same top positions in Constellation Energy Group when it was formed in 1999. His earlier service at BGE included positions as project engineer at Calvert Cliffs, chief nuclear engineer in the electrical engineering department, treasurer, vice president-engineering and construction, and vice chairman. From 1985-1989, Poindexter served as president and CEO of Constellation Holdings Inc. (CHI), responsible for all of the company's non-regulated activities. Before joining BGE, Poindexter served seven years as an officer in the U.S. Navy.
A 1960 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, where he received a bachelor's degree in engineering (with distinction), Poindexter later earned a master's degree in business administration in finance from Loyola College, Md., in 1975.
Poindexter is active in many industry organizations. He is the incoming chairman of the Nuclear Energy Institute and serves on the board of directors of the Edison Electric Institute, Institute of Nuclear Power Operations, Association of Edison Illuminating Companies and the Southeastern Electric Exchange. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Mercantile Bankshares Corporation, Mercantile Safe Deposit and Trust Company, Baltimore Life Companies and Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited. His civic involvements include serving on the boards of Johns Hopkins University, Johns Hopkins Medicine, U.S. Naval Academy Foundation, Greater Baltimore Committee, Greater Baltimore Alliance and the Historic Annapolis Foundation.
The Nuclear Energy Institute is the nuclear energy industry’s policy organization. This news release and additional information about nuclear energy are available on NEI’s Internet site at http://www.nei.org.