Railroad Commission hires energy industry veteran as executive director

The Texas Railroad Commission regulates the oil and gas industry.
The Texas Railroad Commission regulates the oil and gas industry. James Durbin

Texas’ oil and gas regulator has named a new executive director.

In a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the three-member Texas Railroad Commission named to the position Kimberly Corley, a former executive for Shell Oil.

The executive director oversees the day-to-day operations of the agency and works to implement the policies its commissioners establish.

“Ms. Corley’s technical expertise, executive experience and industry knowledge will be incredibly valuable assets to the commission, and I am confident that she will be an excellent leader,” Chairman David Porter said in a statement.

Corley will replace Lindil Fowler, who was temporarily filling the position after Milton Rister retired in August after three years heading the agency.

Corley has more than 30 years of energy industry experience, the agency said. She held several high-level positions at Shell before leaving the energy giant this year. Most recently, she served as the business development manager for gas monetization and general manager of construction risk mitigation and workforce development at Shell Upstream Americas.

Before working at Shell, she held various positions with oil and gas pipeline companies, including Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, El Paso Corporation and Tenneco Energy.

Corley holds a Bachelor’s of Business Administration from Sam Houston State University and Masters of Liberal Studies with a concentration in Environmental Science and Policy from Rice University.

“Having spent my entire professional career in the energy industry, I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to use my experience and expertise in service to the people of Texas,” Corley said in a statement.

Commissioner Christi Craddick said the agency was eyeing a starting date in February. Corley will draw an annual salary of $180,000.

On top of its oil-and-gas regulating duties, the Railroad Commission oversees mining, pipeline safety and natural gas utilities. It has no authority over trains.