Dr. Robert K. Koger
President and Executive Director
Member, Southern States Energy Board, 1977 - current
Dr. Robert K. Koger was the chair of the North Carolina Utilities Commission in 1980 when it decided to create nonprofit corporation Advanced Energy, one of the first organizations in the nation established with the goal of limiting increases in electric rates through the implementation and promotion of energy efficiency, demand response, and alternative and renewable electric generation sources.
In 1988 Koger accepted leadership of Advanced Energy. Under his guidance, the company expanded its North Carolina base of operations to hire the additional expertise needed to work in the broad categories of its charter. Advanced Energy now works nationally and internationally, growing from 24 employees in 1988 to more than 50 in 2010.
In addition to serving his role at Advanced Energy, Koger twice agreed to take leaves of absence and return to the North Carolina Utilities Commission to serve as interim commissioner for periods during 1999 and 2005. The fact that two governors have called on Koger for this role indicates the confidence in Koger’s ability to discern the substantive issues in the utility industry, and to fairly represent all parties.
Before joining Advanced Energy, Koger served on the commission for 11 years, including eight years as chairman. Earlier experiences include serving three years chief electrical engineer for the commission and then seven years as director of the commission’s Engineering and Economics Division. Before that, Koger worked as an engineer with the U.S. Rural Electrification Administration.
Dr. Koger’s wide-ranging energy experience also includes participation on several important committees including the Executive Committee of the National Association of Regulatory Commissioners (NARUC), President of the Southeastern Association of Regulatory Commissioners (SEARUC) and a 10-year membership on the Advisory Council of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).
The International Association of Energy Engineers honored Koger as Energy Executive of the Year in 1991. More recently Koger received a national public leadership award for his efforts to promote energy efficiency from the U.S. Energy Association and Johnson Controls Inc. at their 2006 Energy Efficiency Forum held in Washington, D.C. And in 2008, the Triangle Business Journal recognized Koger as green nonprofit leader of the year.
Among governmental activities, Koger has served on the North Carolina Energy Policy Council (appointed by the governor) and the U.S. Department of Energy’s State Energy Advisory Board (appointment by the Secretary of Energy). For more than 20 years Koger has been a resource for the Southern States Energy Board, serving on various committees examining issues such as natural gas utilization, electric industry restructuring, clean coal technologies and their export potential, and more recently, distributed generation. Koger has also served on the Southeastern Electric Reliability Council as one of two board members chosen to represent the public interest.
Advanced Energy, with annual revenues of approximately $7 million, is a nonprofit corporation located in Raleigh, North Carolina, that helps industrial, commercial and residential customers improve the return on their energy investment. With expertise in industrial process technologies, motors and drives, and applied building science, Advanced Energy provides solutions through consulting, testing and training. The primary mission of Advanced Energy is to increase efficiency and productivity in industries, businesses and homes as they transform energy into goods and services. At its industrial energy lab, Advanced Energy provides cutting-edge industrial process technologies and state-of-the-art motors and drives testing. Almost one-half of Advanced Energy’s funding comes from North Carolina’s utilities and electric cooperatives through an approved charge on the electric bills which amount to approximately 2 to 3 cents per month for a typical residential user. The remainder is funded through fee-for-service work done nationally and internationally and from federal research grants. Under Koger’s leadership, Advanced Energy has worked on many projects to further energy-efficient economic development in North Carolina, including the publication of the first edition of the “Builder’s Field Guide,” a manual for energy-efficient home construction practices. The corporation also partnered with the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency to make building science services more affordable for low income homebuyers.
Advanced Energy also operates a statewide renewable energy program under a separate board called NC GreenPower. NC GreenPower is nonprofit corporation that promotes the utilization of renewable power (wind, solar, biomass, hydro, etc.) through voluntary participation by customers interested in ensuring a more secure energy supply as well as a cleaner environment. Koger also serves as president of NC GreenPower.
Koger was married to Dr. Jeanne B. Koger (recently deceased) and has three adult children.
Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering, University of Tennessee