Duke Energy Responds to Hiring Issues; CEO Says Company Will Take Whatever Actions are Appropriate

Oct 12, 2010, 10:09 ET from Duke Energy

PLAINFIELD, Ind., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Duke Energy is reviewing e-mails between certain company employees and individuals at the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) that have come to light as part of a public records request.

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"Many of these e-mails are very concerning to Duke Energy, and they will be considered as part of a larger, more comprehensive review," said Jim Rogers, Duke Energy chairman, president and chief executive officer. "This has my full attention and that of our management team. We regret that hiring an attorney from the IURC has raised questions about the manner in which we conduct our business. We will investigate this thoroughly and will take whatever actions are appropriate."

Duke Energy has hired a nationally recognized law firm – Gibson Dunn and Crutcher – to conduct an independent investigation into the company's actions related to these matters. Its work is already under way.  

Duke Energy also intends to fully cooperate with the Indiana Inspector General's investigation. If either the Inspector General's investigation or the company's review of these issues finds any behavior that is inconsistent with high ethical standards, Duke Energy will take appropriate steps to deal with those issues immediately.

On Oct. 5, Duke Energy placed attorney Scott Storms and Mike Reed, president of Duke Energy Indiana, on administrative leave during these investigations.

Duke Energy Appoints Esamann as Interim Indiana President

Duke Energy today also announced that it has appointed Doug Esamann interim president of its Indiana service region.

Esamann – currently senior vice president of corporate strategy and planning at Duke Energy's corporate headquarters in Charlotte, N.C. – will oversee the company's regulatory, governmental relations, economic development and community affairs work in Indiana while the investigation continues.

Esamann joined Public Service Indiana (later called PSI Energy, a predecessor company to Duke Energy), in 1979. From 2001 to 2004, he served as president of PSI Energy. Esamann is a Plainfield, Ind., native and a graduate of Indiana University in Bloomington.

"Doug will provide us with strong, stable leadership in Indiana as we work through these issues," Rogers said.

Duke Energy Indiana's operations provide approximately 6,800 megawatts of electricity capacity to approximately 780,000 customers, making it the state's largest electric supplier.

Duke Energy is one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 4 million customers located in five states in the Southeast and Midwest, representing a population of approximately 11 million people. Its commercial power and international business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com


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SOURCE Duke Energy