Barry Smitherman

Barry Smitherman

CenterPoint Energy | Director

Since January 2017, Mr. Smitherman has served as President and principal attorney of Barry Smitherman, P.C., a law firm specializing in water, electricity and natural gas, and as the managing partner of Smitherman + Associates, L.P., a firm providing consulting services to energy infrastructure-related entities. Mr. Smitherman is also an adjunct professor at The University of Texas School of Law where he teaches courses in Texas energy law. He previously served as a partner in the energy regulatory practice at Vinson & Elkins LLP, an international law firm, from March 2015 to January 2017. He previously served on the Railroad Commission of Texas (RRC), a state agency that oversees the oil, natural gas, coal mining, pipeline and natural gas utility industries in Texas, from July 2011 through January 2015, including as chairman of the RRC from February 2012 to August 2014. Mr. Smitherman also served on the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT), a state agency that regulates the electric, water and landline telecommunications industries in Texas, from April 2004 through July 2011, including as chairman of the PUCT from November 2007 through July 2011. During this time period, Mr. Smitherman served two terms on the U.S. Department of Energy Electricity Advisory Committee, including as chairman of the Transmission Subcommittee, on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC), including as chairman of its Gas committee and a member of the Energy Resources and the Environment committee, on the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Board of Directors and on the regional state committee of the Southwest Power Pool (SPP). Prior to public service, Mr. Smitherman spent 16 years as an investment banker, holding leadership roles with First Boston, J.P. Morgan Securities and Banc One Capital Markets (as Managing Director and National Head of Public Finance). Mr. Smitherman currently serves as Chairman of the Brookwood in Georgetown Board of Directors, a non-profit organization which provides work, housing and artistic opportunities to special needs adults. He received his J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law, his M.P.A. from Harvard University, and his B.B.A. summa cum laude from Texas A&M University.


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