Alabama Power names new president and CEO - - The News for South Mississippi

Alabama Power names new president and CEO

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Mark Crosswhite will be the new president and CEO of Alabama Power. Source: Alabama Power Mark Crosswhite will be the new president and CEO of Alabama Power. Source: Alabama Power

A big change is underway at one of the most powerful and influential utilities in Alabama.

After more than 12 year as the leader of Alabama Power, Charles McCrary is retiring. Mark Crosswhite will be the new president and CEO of the company, effective March 1.

Crosswhite, 51, will also join the board of directors of Alabama Power in May. McCrary will remain the chairman of the board of directors until May 1, when Crosswhite is expected to take over the role, an Alabama Power spokesperson said.

Cindy Crawford with the Birmingham Business Journal said McCrary was behind the scenes for the most part during his almost 13 years at Alabama Power Company. But in 2006, he took center stage when he publicly criticized Birmingham city leadership for failing to push the city forward.

"Charles McCrary is one of the few leaders in Birmingham, we have a lot of business leaders, but few are willing to step out there and say this needs to change," Crawford said.

During McCrary's tenure, he pushed power crews to restore power to areas hit by weather events including Hurricane Katrina in 2005 to the April 27 tornadoes in 2011. Crawford said it's no surprise McCrary is stepping down since it's been rumored for more than a year.

Crosswhite reacted to announcement in a video statement released by the power company

"It's a great honor. I'm very excited about the opportunity and honored to be given a chance. Very fortunate to follow Charles McCrary," Crosswhite said.

Alabama Power Company has been a driving force for economic development in the state. Crosswhite credits power company employees for the service to customers and he points to environmental regulations as the company's biggest challenge.

"Environmental regulations will be one of Alabama Power's biggest challenges. We already spent billions of dollars on environmental compliance; more is on the way," Crosswhite said.

Crawford said replacing McCrary will be Crosswhite's the biggest challenge.

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