If confirmed by the Senate, the registered independent would serve a five-year term ending June 30, 2013. His current term expires June 30, 2008.
When named to the commission, Wellinghoff was a partner in the law firm Beckley Singleton, specializing in energy and consumer law. He previously was managing principal and regulatory attorney for Efficient Energy Systems Inc. and staff counsel for the Nevada Public Utilities Commission.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., originally recommended Wellinghoff, who holds degrees from the University of Nevada, Howard University, and Antioch Law School.
Senate confirmation of Chairman Kelliher still pending
In March, Bush named FERC Chairman Joseph Kelliher, a Republican, to serve a second five-year term and to continue as chairman. If confirmed, he would serve a new term expiring June 30, 2012.
The Senate Energy Committee sent Kelliher's name to the full Senate in May for a confirmation vote. (HNN 5/25/07) Reid placed his name on the Senate's executive calendar, where it will stay until the majority leader is ready to bring it up for a vote.
Although Kelliher's first term expired June 30, he can continue to serve on the commission until the current session of Congress ends at the end of this year.
FERC is composed of five members appointed by the president with the consent of the Senate. Commissioners serve five year terms. No more than three may belong to the same political party.
The other commissioners are Republicans Philip Moeller and Marc Spitzer and Democrat Suedeen Kelly. Moeller's term expires June 30, 2010. Spitzer's term expires June 30, 2011. Kelly's term expires June 30, 2009.