BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Calvin Crowder is president and CEO of GridLiance, an independent transmission company that partners with electric cooperatives, municipal utilities, and others to unlock the financial value of existing transmission assets and invest in transmission projects. Crowder is responsible for the strategic vision and overall business operation of GridLiance as it invests in transmission infrastructure and plans for the future and improves the reliability of the grid.
With nearly 30 years of electric utility experience, Crowder was named president and CEO of GridLiance in 2017. Previously, he served as the president of GridLiance South Central, the company’s subsidiary overseeing business development in ERCOT, MISO South and the New Mexico electric regions.
Before joining the company, Crowder held several roles of increasing responsibility at American Electric Power, one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, rising to the rank of executive director. In 2007, he was named president of Electric Transmission Texas, LLC, a jointly owned subsidiary of AEP and Berkshire Hathaway Energy. There he oversaw the growth of ETT, which constructs, owns, and operates transmission facilities as a regulated utility within the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, to $3 billion in assets.
Prior to working at AEP, Crowder held a variety of executive and policy leadership roles at Central and South West Corporation. He began his career in the electric utility industry at Central Power and Light Company in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Crowder earned a Bachelor of Arts in economics and a Master of Arts in regulatory economics from New Mexico State University. He serves on the advisory board of the Gulf Coast Power Association, the Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, and on the Executive Board of Directors for Big Brothers and Big Sisters Lone Star. Previously, he served on the board of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central and South Texas.
Terry Boston served as CEO of PJM from 2008 to 2016, where he designed and executed several key growth initiatives, including significantly increasing member participants (from 500 to 960 members), nearly doubling the market from $26 to $50 billion per year and developing the most advanced wholesale market for advanced energy storage in North America. Prior to joining PJM, Boston was the Executive Vice President of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), the largest U.S. Public Power provider. In his 35 years at TVA, he directed divisions in transmission and power operations, pricing, contracts and electric system reliability.
Boston is a recognized industry thought leader and has served on the Board of the Electric Power Research Institute and as a member of the Bipartisan Policy Center task force to develop recommendations for U.S. energy policy. He is the immediate past President of the GO15 international association of large grid operators and the Association of Edison Electric Illuminating Companies. Additionally, Boston has served on the Boards of the North American Energy Reliability Corporation (NERC), North American Transmission Forum and the National Academy’s Board of Energy and Environmental Systems, among several others. He was one of the eight industry experts selected to direct NERC’s investigation of the August 2003 Northeast/Midwest blackout.
In 2014, Boston was elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE), one of the highest professional honors accorded to an engineer, for his leadership in the development and operation of large electric grids and markets for wholesale electricity. Boston’s other recognitions and honors include the “Leadership in Power” award from the IEEE Power and Energy Society in 2011 and the Electricity Storage Association’s Leadership Award in 2012. Boston holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering, magna cum laude, from Tennessee Technological University and a master’s degree in engineering administration from the University of Tennessee.
Darius Sepassi is a managing director in the private equity group. Since joining Blackstone in 2016, Sepassi has focused on investments in the oilfield services and equipment, power generation, transmission and power services sectors and has been involved in the execution of Blackstone’s investments in GridLiance, Onyx, Transmission Developers, Inc and Ulterra. Sepassi serves as a director of each of these companies. Before joining Blackstone, Sepassi was a senior vice president at Oaktree Capital where he was involved in the evaluation and execution of investment opportunities in the power generation and midstream sectors. Prior to that, he worked as a vice president at Highstar Capital. He has also held positions as an associate at First Reserve Corporation and as an analyst at Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. Sepassi received a Bachelor of Science in accounting with distinction and a Master of Science in business administration from the Pennsylvania State University.
Michael Morris served in senior executive roles at American Electric Power Company (AEP) from 2003 to 2014, including as the Company’s Chairman, CEO and President. While at AEP, Morris refocused the Company’s strategy on its domestic utility business and championed development of new technologies to reduce emissions from coal-fired power plants. Prior to joining AEP, Morris was Chairman, President and CEO of Northeast Utilities System from 1997 to 2003, where he successfully managed the company through several transformative partnerships and transactions, including the sale of the Millstone Station nuclear plant, a merger with Yankee Energy System Inc. and the acquisition of Connecticut Valley Electric Co.
Morris also served as President and CEO of Consumers Power Company, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy, from 1990 to 1997. Earlier in his career, he was President of Colorado Interstate Gas Co. and Executive Vice President of ANR Pipeline Co., both subsidiaries of El Paso Energy.
He has served on a number of influential and notable advisory boards, including the U.S. Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Board and the National Governors Association’s Task Force on Electricity Infrastructure. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Spectra Energy, L Brands, Alcoa and The Hartford Financial Services Group. He also serves on the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents and is a trustee of the MSU College of Law. Morris holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biology from Eastern Michigan University. He received a law degree, cum laude, from the Detroit College of Law and is a member of the Michigan Bar Association.
John-Paul (JP) R. Munfa is a managing director in the private equity group. Since rejoining Blackstone in 2011, Munfa has focused on investments in power and also midstream, a sector in which he now shares responsibility with David I. Foley, global head of Blackstone Energy Partners, for Blackstone's investment activities. Munfa has played an integral role in the execution of Blackstone’s investments in Cheniere, EagleClaw, Rover, Grand Prix, Global Offshore Wind, GridLiance, Permian Highway Pipeline, PBF Energy and Utility One Source. Munfa serves as a director of Cheniere Energy Partners, Custom Truck One Source, EagleClaw and GridLiance. From 2006 to 2009, Munfa was an analyst with Blackstone’s Private Equity group, where he was involved in the analysis and execution of private equity investments in energy and other industries. He began his career in 2004 as an analyst in Blackstone’s Restructuring & Reorganization group. Munfa received a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Harvard College and a Master of Business Administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he graduated as an Arjay Miller Scholar.