The Future of Energy: Natural Gas

Date and Time
Thursday, May 4, 2017
5:30pm— 7:30pm
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Hearst Tower
214 N Tryon St
47th Floor conference room of K&L Gates
Charlotte, NC 28202
United States
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An exclusive expert panel discussion and networking reception featuring:

Mr. Keith Butler, SVP and Chief Risk Officer, Duke Energy
Mr. George Baldwin, Director, Natural Gas & FERC Policy, Duke Energy
Uptown Charlotte
May 4, 2017
5:30-7:30 pm

The networking reception generously sponsored by K&L Gates Law Firm will precede the panel discussion.
For more information, please contact Jon Vague at [email protected]

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Time: 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Hearst Tower
47th Floor conference room of K&L Gates in Uptown
214 N Tryon St
Charlotte, NC 28202

Who must attend:

  • Duke Fuqua School and Wharton School alumni and their community friends interested in energy and environmental business and policy.
  • Utility, oil & gas and energy services professionals.
  • Diverse finance, consulting, legal and policy professionals interested in energy and environmental issues.


  • $15 for Wharton Club Members
  • $25 for Non-Members
  • $1 for Joseph Wharton Members

In October 2016 Duke Energy, already the largest electric power holding in the United States, completed the $5 billion acquisition of Piedmont Natural Gas. The acquisition added Piedmont's 1 million natural gas customers to Duke Energy's existing customer base of 525,000 natural gas customers and 7.4 million electric customers. Duke Energy’s use of natural gas across its local distribution company (LDC) and electric businesses, now ranks second in the U.S. The company also participates in natural gas pipeline transportation, including a $2.5 billion investment in the Atlantic Coast Pipeline expected in-service in 2019.  Duke Energy projects that the proportion of its business from natural gas will expand from 8% today to 15% in 10 years.  Duke Energy plans to invest $3.3 billion in regulated natural gas-fired power generation over the next 5 years, in an effort to bring cleaner and more affordable power generation to customers.  The share of natural gas-fired generation in Duke Energy’s total generation output is projected to increase over the next 10 years from 28% to 35%, as coal and oil-fired generation is bound to decrease by the same amount. “The Future of Energy: Natural Gas” is an energy event focused on the role of natural gas in the future of the energy industry and why utilities are re-entering the natural gas business. The Duke Fuqua Club of Charlotte is organizing the event in collaboration with the Wharton Business School Club of Charlotte and K&L Gates Law Firm. 


kbutler.jpgKeith Butler –SVP Global Risk Management & Insurance and Chief Risk Officer

Keith Butler is senior vice president, global risk management and insurance, and chief risk officer for Duke Energy. He is responsible for corporate risk management, with particular focus on the company's market, credit, operational and strategic risks. In addition, he manages the company's insurance programs. He assumed his current position in February 2016. Butler joined Duke Power in 1984 in the controller's department. Butler has more than 30 years of extensive leadership abilities and expertise in regulated and unregulated energy markets, both internationally and in the United States. In February 1998, he was named senior vice president and chief financial officer of Duke Energy Global and its affiliated companies: Duke Energy Power Services LLC, Duke Energy International LLC and Duke Energy Industrial Asset Development LLC. He was named senior vice president and chief financial officer of Duke Energy North America in July 1998, and appointed chief operating officer of DukeSolutions in September 1999. He was named vice president and controller of Duke Energy in August 2001. Butler was named to lead the tax function in December 2006. A native of Greensboro, N.C., Butler earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is a certified public accountant. In 2010, he completed the Advanced Management Program at the Duke University Fuqua School of Business. He serves on the Enterprise Risk Management Initiative advisory board for the Poole College of Management at N.C. State University and is a member of the Strategic Risk Council of the Conference Board. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and NC Association of Certified Public Accountants.

gbaldwin.jpgGeorge Baldwin - Director, Gas & FERC Policy, Duke Energy

George Baldwin is Director, Gas & FERC Policy for Duke Energy and is responsible for leading the development, communication and advocacy for constructive public policy outcomes at FERC, in Congress, and within Duke Energy’s state jurisdictions. Formerly, Baldwin was managing director, government relations & sustainability, at Piedmont Natural Gas. From 1999 to 2003, Baldwin was VP-Sales & Marketing at Progress Energy, responsible for developing and implementing sales & marketing strategies, performing business planning and leading economic development efforts. At the time, Baldwin served as the integration team lead for the merger of NC Natural Gas into Progress Energy. Baldwin currently serves as a Board Trustee at Appalachian State University, and on the following boards and committees: American Gas Association’s Legislative Committee, the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America’s Legislative Committee, NC Energy Policy Council, E4 Carolinas, and the NC Chamber of Commerce. He earned his Master of Environmental Management degree from the Nicholas School at Duke University, his Master of Business Administration from Campbell University, and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from Appalachian State University.

Panel Moderator:

jvague.jpgJon P. Vague –Lead Business & Technical Consultant, Grid Solutions, Duke Energy

Jon P. Vague is currently part of Duke Energy's Grid Solutions Investments team in Charlotte, the group responsible for planning the largest grid investments in Duke Energy’s history –a projected $25 billion in grid modernization investments over the next 10 years. A graduate of the Duke Fuqua School of Business MBA, Jon Vague is a licensed attorney (Texas) and a certified Project Management Professional. Prior to re-joining Duke Energy in 2015, Jon worked in Houston and several Latin American cities doing international utility M&A for Duke Energy International and El Paso Energy (now Kinder Morgan) and as a management consultant focusing on Brazil oil boom investments. Vague helped close a US $ 1 billion acquisition for Duke Energy in Brazil in 1999 (the largest international investment in Duke Energy’s history), working as manager in the original Houston-based international development team. A U.S. citizen born in Brazil, Vague is fluent in 4 languages, has lived in 9 countries and has engaged in business and education travels across three continents. From 2011 to 2013, Vague served as founder and Chairman of the US-Brazil Energy Forum For World Commerce and Development in Houston, a forum recognized by the U.S. Congress including participants from various countries. During that period, Vague acted as chair, speaker and moderator in over 20 major oil & gas and energy conferences in the U.S. and Latin America, including programs for the U.S. Department of Commerce. He currently serves on the Board of Duke University Hispanic and Latino Alumni Association (DUHLAA) and is an active member of the Duke Fuqua Club of Charlotte, the Tulane Univ. Alumni Club of Charlotte, the Wharton Club of Charlotte, the World Affairs Council and E4Carolinas.


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Hearst Tower

214 N Tryon St, 47th Floor conference room of K&L Gates, Charlotte, NC 28202, United States,
by public transit by car by bike Walking