A former Democratic candidate for governor became the newest member of the Tennessee Valley Authority board of directors on Thursday.
Michael McWherter, of Jackson, Tenn., took the oath of office Thursday in a ceremony in Nashville. His term will expire on May 18, 2016.
McWherter was confirmed unanimously by the U.S. Senate on Jan. 1, and he was sworn in by U.S. District Judge Todd J. Campbell of the Middle District of Tennessee during a ceremony at the Estes Kefauver Federal Building and Courthouse.
“I am deeply honored to have been nominated by the president, supported by senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, and confirmed by the Senate,” McWherter said in a TVA press release. “TVA is the largest economic engine in our region, and I look forward to working with TVA to be a cost-effective supplier of services to our customers.”
McWherter has been owner and president of Central Distributors Co. and Volunteer Distributing Co., both Tennessee-based beverage distribution companies, since 1989 and 1985, respectively. He worked in private law practice from 1982 to 1985 in Nashville, with a focus on banking and administrative law, and clerked for the Tennessee Supreme Court from 1981 to 1982, the press release said.
McWherter was the Democratic nominee for governor of Tennessee in 2010, and he now serves as director and former chairman of First State Bank of Union City, Tenn. He has served on the board of directors of the Jackson Energy Authority in Jackson, and as director of the Jackson Chamber of Commerce and the Nashville Arts Council. From 1988 to 1995, he served as a board member of the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. He received both a bachelor’s degree and law degree from Vanderbilt University.
McWherter is one of four newly confirmed appointments to the nine-member TVA board of directors. The other three are Joe H. Ritch, of Huntsville, Ala.; V. Lynn Evans, of Memphis; and Peter Mahurin, of Bowling Green, Ky. They will join TVA Board Chairman Bill Sansom, of Knoxville, and current board members Barbara Haskew, of Chattanooga; Neil McBride, of Oak Ridge; and Richard Howorth of Oxford, Miss.
TVA is a corporation owned by the U.S. government, and it provides electricity for business customers and distribution utilities that serve nine million people in parts of seven southeastern states at prices below the national average. TVA, which receives no taxpayer money and makes no profits, also provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system and assists utilities and state and local governments with economic development.