ATLANTA – April 3, 2023 – James Y. (Jim) Kerr II has been named the chairman of the board of directors, CEO and president of Southern Company Gas. Kerr, who previously served as Southern Company’s executive vice president, chief legal officer and chief compliance officer, was chosen to lead the company as a part of Southern Company’s recent succession and executive leadership plan.
“I’m very excited for Jim and the entire Southern Company Gas team,” said Chris Womack, president of Southern Company. “As the energy landscape continues to evolve and customers’ needs continue to change, Jim will bring his own dynamic leadership skills to Southern Company Gas as we continue our vital work of serving our customers with clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy they need to live and work.”
Kerr joined Southern Company in 2014 where he led the company’s legal, corporate governance, audit and compliance functions. He also co-chaired Southern Company’s internal business assurance council and served in other risk management leadership roles. During his tenure at Southern Company, Kerr helped direct the successful execution and regulatory approval of several transactions including the merger with AGL Resources, acquisition of PowerSecure, and divestitures of Gulf Power and other assets. He coordinated the company's approach to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, ensuring the integration of current and emerging ESG topics into the strategic direction, governance and reporting of the company and engagement efforts with institutional investors and other stakeholders.
“Joining the Southern Company Gas family truly is an honor for me because the work our teams do every day matters to the lives of the millions of customers we are privileged to serve,” said Kerr. “Our employees in Tennessee, Georgia, Illinois and Virginia provide clean, safe, reliable and affordable natural gas service that fuels the lives and prosperity of our customers and communities."
Before joining Southern Company, Kerr practiced law representing utilities as a partner at McGuireWoods LLP and senior advisor at McGuireWoods Consulting LLC. From 2001 to 2008 he served as a member of the North Carolina Utilities Commission, as president of the Southeastern Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners and, from 2007 to 2008, as president of the National Association of Regulatory Commissioners. In his career, Kerr has been asked to testify on a variety of energy and regulatory issues before the United States Congress, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and state legislatures.
"I am excited to join the team at Southern Company Gas at such an important time in our industry," continued Kerr. "While continuing to serve the growing needs of our customers and communities safely and reliably, we also will work to ensure that natural gas remains a valuable, and valued, part of a clean energy future for our customers, our nation and our world. This work is important to those we serve, and it is worthy of our very best efforts every day."
Kerr’s involvement in the community includes serving on the board of directors for the American Gas Association, Georgia Aquarium, civic group Buckhead Coalition and mental health treatment organization Skyland Trail. He also actively supports the literacy organization Page Turners Make Great Learners as well as other legal organizations such as the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation and Pro Bono Partnership of Atlanta. Kerr is a former director of the Electric Power Research Institute and currently is vice chair of the Institute for the Environment board of visitors for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He earned a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, from Washington and Lee University and a juris doctorate degree, with honors, from the University of North Carolina School of Law.
About Southern Company Gas Southern Company Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE:SO), America’s premier energy company. Southern Company Gas serves approximately 4.4 million natural gas utility customers through its regulated distribution companies in four states with more than 600,000 retail customers through its companies that market natural gas. Other nonutility businesses include investments in interstate pipelines and ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities. For more information, visit southerncompanygas.com.