Growth Energy adds President, COO position

By Holly Jessen | October 14, 2010
Posted Nov. 2, 2010

Growth Energy has a new president and chief operating officer. Jim Nussle, who has served on Growth Energy's board of directors since February 2009, began serving in the newly created full-time position on Nov. 1. "I'm very excited about it, certainly for me personally and professionally," he told EPM, "and I hope I can contribute to the great success that Growth Energy has had the last couple of years."

Nussle is a former congressman who served eight terms for Iowa, eventually serving as chairman of the U.S. House budget committee. In 2007 he was appointed director of the Office of Management and Budget by President George W. Bush. Currently, Nussle is president and CEO of a consulting firm, The Nussle Group. Over time he plans to "wind down" his involvement with that, he said.

Nussle's responsibilities with Growth Energy will include overseeing its day-to-day operations, including revenue growth, budget, expenses, communications, and other non-lobbying associated activity. CEO Tom Buis will focus on working with Growth Energy members, board members, the media and policy makers, among other things. Both of their roles at Growth Energy will continue to evolve over time, Nussle said.

Nussle has been aware of the benefits of ethanol since he was a legislator in Iowa, the No. 1 ethanol producing state in the U.S., he said. It's something he feels passionate about. "I just see this as a natural bipartisan issue," he said.

Buis said Nussle will add immediate value for Growth Energy. "Jim's experience on Capitol Hill and his ability to manage large teams will be huge assets to Growth Energy," Buis said. "As a former Iowa congressman, he also possesses the knowledge of ethanol and agriculture that will allow him to hit the ground running and be a powerful advocate for America's ethanol supporters."

Nussle joins other big name supporters of Growth Energy. In February 2009 the organization announced that retired Gen. Wesley Clark would be a co-chairman of the group with Jeff Broin, CEO of Poet LLC.