The nFront Energy Practice Team
Highly experienced, capable and committed to your success
nFront Consulting team members bring extensive electric power industry experience to every assignment. Each member of the team demonstrates exceptional capabilities, experience, and the commitment to provide our clients with the information and insights needed to address their most pressing questions and challenges.
Our Energy Practice Team
Mr. Painter has assisted many electric power industry clients with wholesale and retail utility cost of service, cost allocation and rate design; planning, financing, valuing, acquiring, divesting, purchasing, selling, and integrating power supply and demand-side assets, transactions, and portfolios; negotiating and administering related contracts; corporate strategic planning and merger analyses; and related regulatory, arbitration, and litigation proceedings. Mr. Painter has extensive experience evaluating nuclear, coal, natural gas, hydroelectric, renewable, and alternative energy resources.
Mr. Painter is particularly adept at communicating results to public, management, and governing groups in a manner that enables appropriate action by decision-makers. He has significant experience in facilitating meetings of groups that include individuals with diverse disciplines, backgrounds, and interests. He is an excellent witness experienced in providing live and written testimony in several forums and otherwise supporting major litigation efforts.
Mr. Painter has served in several corporate management and leadership positions, which enhances his ability to work effectively with client management and governing bodies. Mr. Painter was a partner and then stockholder in R. W. Beck, Inc., a highly regarded, international engineering and management consulting firm of approximately 500 professionals, purchased by SAIC in 2009. His association with R. W. Beck spanned more than 22 years from early 1980 through late 2002. Over that period, Mr. Painter advanced from an entry level engineer to the position of Executive Engineering Consultant and was elected to multiple terms on R. W. Beck’s Board of Directors.
Mr. Kushner has more than 20 years of experience in the electric utility consulting industry, primarily focused on electric system resource planning and supporting his clients’ transitions to utilization of clean energy resources. During that time, Mr. Kushner has managed or otherwise been involved in various types of engagements, including integrated resource plans (IRPs), power supply studies, independent engineering assessments (for conventional and renewable technologies), and demand-side management evaluations. Mr. Kushner has expertise in the areas of production cost modeling associated with utility system expansion planning, as well as feasibility studies and economic analysis. Mr. Kushner has been involved in the issuance of power supply requests for proposals (RFPs), evaluations of responses to RFPs, and portfolio evaluations for both renewable and conventional supply options.
Mr. Kushner has presented expert testimony and prepared other experts for testimony related to determination of need proceedings and other docketed regulatory matters, and has also testified under cross examination by intervening parties. He also supports clients in their efforts to comply with the requirements of applicable regulatory framework.
Mr. Kushner’s experience includes numerous presentations to clients’ Board of Directors and other stakeholders, including managing the stakeholder engagement process associated with the integrated resource plans of municipal electric utilities. Mr. Kushner’s expertise in developing comprehensive integrated resource plans is supported by his knowledge of conventional and renewable energy resources, demand-side management/energy efficiency, and production cost modeling.
Mr. Davis has over 30 years of experience in the energy industry covering a diversity of subject matter, including: power supply planning, power and fuel procurement, renewable energy, environmental assessments, demand-side planning, market price forecasting, risk management, project development and financing, end-use modeling, load forecasting, wholesale and retail rate design, and strategic business planning. Mr. Davis is an expert witness on several subject matters, having testified in federal and several state regulatory proceedings pertaining to integrated resource plans, demand-side plans, distributed energy storage, electric market deregulation, power supply and demand-side RFPs, power project permitting, certification of need, and market power concerns.
Prior to joining nFront Consulting, Mr. Davis was Director of the Integrated Resource Planning practice for R. W. Beck, Inc., where he was a consultant for over 20 years. He has also held positions as Vice President for Ice Energy, Inc., a developer of distributed energy storage projects, and as Engineer for Gainesville Regional Utilities, a municipal utility in Florida, where he lead demand-side regulatory matters.
Mr. Nunes has more than 25 years of experience in providing consulting services to the electric utility industry, primarily in the areas of power supply resource planning, economic analysis, and statistical analysis. He has led numerous power supply planning efforts, including integrated resource plans, evaluations of supply- and demand-side energy resources, development of demand-side management programs, and feasibility studies that supported bond financing. He has also been responsible for numerous load forecasts and load analytics studies for electric utilities for use in power supply and delivery facilities planning and rate-making.
Mr. Nunes has led or participated in numerous strategic planning sessions, has presented before numerous Boards of Directors and stakeholder groups, has testified as an expert witness in regulatory proceedings in multiple jurisdictions on planning issues, and has delivered numerous presentations on planning issues to industry forums.
Prior to joining nFront Consulting, Mr. Nunes was a senior consultant at R. W. Beck, Inc., and its successor companies, SAIC and Leidos Engineering, Inc., for over 20 years.
Ms. Painter has over 40 years of experience in the energy industry covering diverse subject matter, including: evaluation of power supply alternatives, power procurement negotiations, arrangements for the joint ownership of generation assets and the preparation of technical reports in support of project financing, transmission interconnection and delivery arrangements, including arrangements pertaining to the joint ownership of transmission assets, and wholesale cost of service studies and rate design.
Ms. Painter has extensive experience in transmission policy and regulatory matters. This experience includes client assistance regarding the provision of open access transmission service in connection various Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rulemakings and orders promoting open access to the nation’s transmission grid, regional transmission planning and cost allocation. Ms. Painter has been involved in cases before the FERC and state regulatory commissions.. She has also developed terms and conditions, revenue requirements and rates for non-jurisdictional transmission providers.
Prior to joining nFront Consulting, Ms. Painter was a Senior Consultant with R. W. Beck, Inc. and its successor, SAIC, for over 30 years. Ms. Painter’s educational background includes a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Central Florida.
Mr. Haddad has over 40 years of utility management experience, primarily focused in the electric and water utility industry. He has demonstrated expertise in the areas of power generation development, operations, retail and wholesale power marketing, asset optimization, commodity fuel procurement, and the negotiation of complex physical and financial infrastructure related transactions.
He has been responsible for the planning, permitting, construction, and operation of state-of- the-art traditional and renewable electric generation assets using best available environmental control technologies. He has proven ability to work with utilities, contractors, and developers to structure and negotiate large-scale asset and purchase power agreements for both traditional and renewable resources, commodity fuel portfolio procurements, financial hedging programs for energy price stabilization and transportation contracts for both rail and natural gas pipelines. He also has created and executed complex asset restructuring programs for the optimization of individual utility, joint action and power pool portfolios.
Prior to joining nFront Consulting, he was with the Orlando Utilities Commission from 1977 through 2007, the 16th largest fully-integrated, AA rated municipal electric and water utility in the United States and second largest in Florida servicing approximately 196,000 customers in Orlando, unincorporated Orange County and St. Cloud, FL. For the last 11 years of his tenure, Mr. Haddad served as Vice President of OUC’s Power Resources Business Unit.
Since retiring from OUC in 2007, he has been providing large scale energy related consulting services to clients nationwide.
Mr. Simpson is an Executive Consultant with over 40 years of experience in the electric utility business. This experience includes over 30 years in the operation and management of nuclear resources, including management of successful turnaround programs for lower performing nuclear resources. Mr. Simpson experience includes nuclear operations, training, licensing, materials, contracts, emergency planning, records management, environmental protection and safety. He also has experience managing nuclear engineering and nuclear engineering support groups. In addition, Mr. Simpson has a proven ability to manage large complex projects on tight timelines for the services company of a major northeast electric utility. Professional services managed include accounting, finance, human resources, supply chain management, information technology and legal services.
Before joining nFront Consulting, Bert Simpson served as President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) Services Corporation. PSEG is a competitive energy company with operations primarily in the Northeast, and other select markets. Prior to being named President and COO, he was Senior Vice President-Information Technology and Chief Information Officer. He also served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer of PSEG Nuclear and Senior Vice President of Nuclear Engineering. Prior to joining PSEG, Mr. Simpson was Vice President-Nuclear Support for Arizona Public Service Company (APS), which operates the three-unit Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station and Vice President-Nuclear Engineering. He also held a number of managerial positions with Florida Power Corporation (now Duke Energy Florida) including Director-Nuclear Operations Engineering and Projects, Director-Nuclear Operations Site Support, and Director-Nuclear Operations Engineering and Licensing.
Mr. Stein has directed the preparation of power supply planning, financial, and rate-related studies for individual electric utilities, joint action agencies, industrial clients, and other large energy consumers. Throughout his more than 40 year career in the utility industry, he has helped clients identify, evaluate, procure, finance, and implement numerous power supply alternatives. He also has represented clients in contract evaluations and negotiations to help achieve the most economical and reliable energy supply. Mr. Stein has presented testimony before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), as well as a number of state public service commissions, local district courts, and other regulatory bodies.
Mr. Stein also assisted clients with strategic power supply, transmission policy and related regulatory issues that affect capacity and energy markets, including those established by various Regional Transmission Organizations, utilities’ joint formation, and joint power supply acquisitions. He has also been involved with location-based market price forecasting, enterprise risk management, portfolio resource analysis, generation dispatch and control area operational strategies, power pools, transmission ownership opportunities and energy resource acquisitions in the increasingly competitive utility environment. These services have been provided in numerous market regions throughout the United States, including Entergy, FRCC, PJM, MISO, SPP, and SERC and in Africa.
Mr. Stein has conducted evaluations on most generation technologies including nuclear, coal, oil, combined and simple cycle, co-generation, renewables and demand side resources.
Prior to joining nFront Consulting, he was an Assistant Vice President with SAIC, and an owner with R. W. Beck, Inc. where he was employed for over 30 years. Prior to joining R. W. Beck, Mr. Stein was employed in the generation and transmission planning area for a large utility in the Florida. During this time, he participated in state and regional studies that addressed joint power pooling opportunities and transmission planning and reliability studies.
Mr. Washburn has over 40 years of electric utility experience that includes approximately 35 years with a Florida based electric utility. Since June 2014, Mr. Washburn has been an Executive Consultant with nFront Consulting. During this time, Mr. Washburn has primarily assisted utilities with conducting transmission planning studies, addressing system operational issues, and other Open Access Transmission Tariff (OATT) related matters. The OATT assistance has included updating OATT cost of service and related rates, charges, terms and conditions, business practices, and development of alternative transmission service products. He also assisted in the development of a special retail rate for a vertically integrated utility for one of its large retail customers.
Mr. Washburn’s experience also includes expert witness testimony and related assistance associated with power plant needs determination on behalf of OUC, transmission OATT cost of service and rates on behalf of LADWP, the continuation of de-pancaked transmission rates between the MISO and LGU/KU regions on behalf of KyMEA, and rates and direct assignment facilities under the PG&E wholesale distribution tariff on behalf of the City and County of San Francisco. This litigation experience also includes FERC proceedings pertaining to OATT transmission formula rates.
Prior to working with nFront Consulting, Mr. Washburn provided a diverse set of services to Orlando Utilities Commission and the Florida Municipal Power Pool. As Vice President of the Transmission Business Unit at Orlando Utilities Commission, he was responsible for the planning, regulatory permitting, construction and operation of over 300 miles high voltage transmission lines, over 30 high voltage substations, and the 24-by-7 system operations of the transmission and generation system. Under his supervision, OUC developed its OATT based on the Commission’s proforma open access transmission tariff which included cost of service based transmission rates and transmission loss factors. OUC successfully filed its OATT at FERC and received “safe harbor” status as a non-jurisdictional transmission provider. Mr. Washburn also supervised the updating of OUC’s OATT rates, loss factors, and terms and conditions and related “safe harbor” filings at FERC.
As the Chief Information Officer at Orlando Utilities Commission, Washburn was responsible for all of the Information Technology including microcomputer support, computer applications, computer hardware, telecommunication and the fiber optics data communications. In other management roles at Orlando Utilities Commission, he was responsible for financial planning, load forecasting, rate design, wholesale marketing, and generation planning.
Mr. Washburn also assisted with the formation of the Florida Municipal Power Pool, which started operation in July 1988. As the first Executive Director of the Florida Municipal Power Pool, from June 2006 to June 2014, Mr. Washburn was responsible for the reliable, economic operation of more than 4,500 megawatts of generation serving 20 municipal utilities in Florida, compliance with the North America Reliability Corporation Reliability Standards, and overseeing the clearinghouse price process for the Pool.
Mr. Eckhart has approximately 10 years of experience providing consulting services to electric utilities, primarily in the areas of energy resource planning, financial analysis, and load and distributed generation data analytics. He has been an integral part of many project teams, contributing in the areas of project management, data research and analysis, model-building, and report development across the following types of consulting projects.
- Integrated resource plans
- Clean energy plans
- System load forecasts
- Solar integration studies
- Distributed generation studies
- Supply and demand-side resource evaluations
- Consulting engineer’s reports in support of the issuance of project revenue bonds
Importantly, Mr. Eckhart has been responsible for conducting resource planning studies for clients using the EnCompass™ power system simulation and optimization model. This software offers detailed modeling of commitment and dispatch and flexibility in timestep to accommodate more detailed modeling of intermittent renewable resources, storage, and operating reserve requirements.
Mr. Eckhart earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering and Management Science from the University of Central Florida in 2013. He resides in Orlando, Florida.
Robert Wilson has an impressive background with over 10 years of experience in the electric utility industry, specializing in load and generation analytics, resource planning, and forecasting. His expertise includes power markets such as Southwest Power Pool (SPP) and Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), where he has developed bid and offer strategies to maximize the value of member assets. He also has a strong understanding of transmission congestion patterns in power markets and has experience developing hedging tactics.
Mr. Wilson has taken a lead analyst role on Integrated Resource Plans for utilities operating in both the SPP and MISO markets. His skills extend to using industry-standard production cost modeling software and creating custom programs to perform optimization, forecasting, and analysis.
Mr. Wilson holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and Master of Business Administration from the University of Missouri – Columbia. Moreover, he is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Missouri and currently resides in Columbia, MO.
Mr. Williams joined the nFront Consulting team in June 2022 as a Consultant and has been supporting nFront’s electric utility clients on a variety of planning-related projects, including integrated resource plans (IRP), load forecasting studies, renewable resource evaluations, and regulatory research. Kevin comes from a background in industrial engineering and logistics, having worked in an operations and supply chain role at an E-commerce and Retail Business.
Kevin enjoys traveling to locally owned restaurants, spending time with friends and family, and volunteering. As Kevin continues his time at nFront, in analytics, he enjoys the company and wealth of knowledge made available by his fellow firm members at nFront Consulting, as they work diligently to provide all clients with the data and direction needed towards their solutions.
Ms. Kupetz is the nFront Business Manager. She manages matters pertaining to benefits programs, employee onboarding, corporate records, business planning, project set-up and records maintenance, invoicing, accounts receivables, and some client analytical assignments.
Ms. Kupetz’s over 35 years of business experience includes a wide variety of organizational, financial, and analytical work. Prior to joining nFront Consulting, she served as an intelligence officer for the Central Intelligence Agency, as a financial analyst for Neiman Marcus, scheduling coordinator for US Senator John Warner, and owner of a successful piano studio. Ms. Kupetz earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Georgetown University.