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Landreaux Named 1st Woman to Lead Entergy Arkansas; Riley Goes to New Orleans

3 min read

Entergy Arkansas’ finance director, Laura Landreaux, has been named the investor-owned electric utility’s first female chief executive, effective July 1.

Landreaux, a University of Arkansas and UA Law School graduate, will succeed Rick Riley, who was named senior vice president of distribution operations and asset management for parent company Entergy Corp. Riley will also assume his new duties July 1.

A 1991 graduate of Mount St. Mary Academy in Little Rock, Landreaux is the daughter of former Deputy White House Counsel Vince Foster. She joined Entergy Arkansas in 2007 as senior counsel and was its vice president of regulatory affairs before becoming finance chief seven months ago. As president and CEO, Landreaux will be responsible for financial and operational business results, as well as safety, resource planning, regulatory issues and customer service for the 700,000-plus homes and businesses the utility serves in Arkansas.

“Laura’s well-rounded experience makes her the right choice to lead Entergy Arkansas in the future as we embark on our program to modernize the grid and create an integrated energy network,” Rod West, Entergy Inc.’s group president for utility operations, said in a statement. “As a native Arkansan, Laura has a keen understanding of the needs of customers and stakeholders in Arkansas, and how best to deliver the value and service they expect in their electricity provider.”

Landreaux is a former officer and founding member of Arkansas Women in Power and belongs to the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Auxiliary. She also serves on the board of the Arkansas Repertory Theatre and is a graduate of Leadership Greater Little Rock. 

“As an active member of the Arkansas nonprofit community, she has demonstrated a strong desire to help our local communities be successful through volunteerism, donations and leadership,” West said.

Riley, whose new job will be based in New Orleans, where he’ll report to West, held the top job at Entergy Arkansas for a little over two years after a stint as the company’s vice president of transmission. According to company proxy statements filed for the 2017 fiscal year, Riley had $916,000 in total compensation, including $622,000 in base pay and incentives.

In his new post, Riley will “support Entergy’s customer-centric strategy at each of its five operating companies in Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi,” the company said in a news release. He will play a key role in modernizing and strengthening the electric grid as the company executes a capital investment plan to improve operations and customer service.

In the news release, Riley called the new job an “exciting opportunity to develop an energy future that creates value for our communities, and ensure our employees have the tools, resources and training necessary to deliver a positive and productive experience.” He called his years in Arkansas “beyond wonderful,” and said he’d miss the colleagues, friends and customers he has come to know here.

In a related move, Entergy Inc. promoted Lauren Kenney, vice president of product development and product management, who will now be vice president of grid modernization and utility support. She has been based in New Orleans since joining Entergy, which serves nearly 3 million customers overall, in 2009.

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