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García Padilla Announces New Appointments to Prepa’s Board

By on October 27, 2016

SAN JUAN — Gov. Alejandro García Padilla appointed Luis Benítez Hernández, Nelson Díaz, Plácido Martínez Mijares, Rafael Díaz Granados and Rubén Freyre Martínez to the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (Prepa) governing board, La Fortaleza announced Thursday.

Moreover, Raúl A. Cermeño, Heriberto Torres Cortés and David Millán Vélez were named as directors of the new Prepa Revitalization Corp., an entity created by the Prepa Revitalization Act that will serve as a vehicle for the restructuring of the utility’s debt.

Prepa headquarters in San Juan (CB photo/Eduardo San Miguel Tió)

Prepa headquarters in San Juan (CB photo)

Prepa’s board must comprise nine members, six of which are chosen by the governor, while the remaining three represent consumers. After Thursday’s five nominations, García Padilla still has one seat to fill. This pending appointment “will be notified once the governor makes such designation,” the press release reads.

“This is one more link in the chain of efforts underway to rescue the corporation and meet the goals of stabilization and transparency that we have set forth. We will continue to temper Prepa to current consumer needs to make it self-sustainable, globally competitive, nonpartisan and able to provide safe, reliable and efficient power service for the benefit of all Puerto Ricans and future generations,” García Padilla stated.

According to La Fortaleza, the appointments were made after the governor chose from a list prepared by an executive search firm. It had at least 10 candidates who should have no less than 10 years of experience in the electrical engineering, business administration, economics, finance or legal fields.

Díaz Granados has more than 20 years’ experience in “transforming businesses focused on the consumer and strategic innovation” throughout various international companies including General Electric, the announcement says. Meanwhile, with 28 years as a consultant, Benítez, an economist and professor at the University of Puerto Rico, had already been a member of Prepa’s board, serving as its vice president since 2014.

Meanwhile, Martínez Mijares, an engineer with over 35 years of experience, has worked since 2014 as an independent consultant for electrical service. As for Nelson Díaz, a lawyer with over 40 years’ experience, he has served as a member of various corporate boards, mostly in U.S. companies. The fifth nominee, Freyre Martínez, has more than 40 years of experience and specializes in “consulting and coaching for organizational change in pharmaceutical technology transfer, manufacturing and operations distribution,” La Fortaleza’s statement reads.

As for the appointments at the new Prepa Revitalization Corp., all three bring a business administration and finance background. Cermeño, with 24 years of experience, has mostly worked in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, while Torres has held during his 34 years of experience various finance positions in such companies as Sol Partners, Supermercados Econo, IBC Group, Wal-Mart, Eli Lilly and KPMG. Millán has 16 years of experience and has served as director in several companies such as Fortaleza Capital Partners, Advent Morro Equity Partners, Accelera Consulting, Glennmont Partners and ABN AMRO.

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