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PSC Commissioners

About Travis Kavulla, Commissioner

Travis Kavulla

Travis Kavulla represents the Montana Public Service Commissionís geographically largest district. In November 2010, he was elected by a 28-point margin, the largest of anyone facing an election contested by both major parties since the modern commissionís inception in 1974. He was re-elected in 2014 in an uncontested race to a term concluding in 2018.

In addition to his role on the Commission, Mr. Kavulla is co-chairman of the Committee on Regional Electric Power Cooperation (CREPC), which leads West-wide discussions on energy policy, wholesale electric markets, and the reliability of the grid. He also serves as the co-chairman for the Northern Tier Transmission Group (NTTG) Steering Committee, which conducts regional transmission planning and cost allocation and whose footprint covers much of the intermountain region and the Pacific Northwest.

Mr. Kavulla was President of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) in 2015-2016, and continues to serve on the associationís Board of Directors and Executive Committee. He also represent states on the Advisory Council of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the FCC Joint Board on Jurisdictional Separations.

As a commissioner, Mr. Kavulla has made decisions on hundreds of matters and worked on several major initiatives, including the review of utility rates for several electric, natural gas, and water utilities; the calculation of power purchase rates and the design of a wind integration rate for renewable projects for Montanaís largest utility; the governance model and by-laws for the California ISOís regional real-time energy market, the Energy Imbalance Market (EIM); the elimination of entry barriers for passenger motor carriers in Montana; the introduction of performance incentives to a utilityís procurement and energy-supply function; and major legislation relating to energy and transportation policy reforms in the State of Montana.

He has also testified before FERC on the reform of the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA) and before Congressional committees on the clean air regulations of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Prior to his election to the Public Service Commission, Mr. Kavulla worked as a journalist, writing on political economy, culture, and development. His by-line has appeared in publications as diverse as the Wall Street Journal, Catholic World Report, the Dallas Morning News, and the Journal of Eastern African Studies, among many others. Mr. Kavulla has also served as associate editor for National Review, the biweekly magazine founded by William F. Buckley, Jr., and has worked as a professional editor of media ranging from blogs to books. Mr. Kavulla has received a number of honors, including being awarded a year-long, full-time writing fellowship in 2008 from the Phillips Foundation.

Mr. Kavulla received his bachelorís in History at Harvard University, and holds a graduate degree from the University of Cambridge, England, where he was a Gates Scholar. Mr. Kavulla is a fourth-generation Montanan.


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