Members of the Rulings Panel
Members are appointed by the Governor-General in accordance with a recommendation from the Minister of Energy and Resources after consultation with the Minister of Justice and the Electricity Authority.
The current members of the Rulings Panel are:
- Peter Dengate Thrush (Chair)
- Geraldine Baumann (Deputy Chair)
- Nicola Wills
- Susan Roberts
- John O'Sullivan
Background notes on each member
Peter Dengate Thrush
Peter Dengate Thrush is a barrister sole, specialising in intellectual and industrial property, information technology, the internet and competition issues. He is a member of the Copyright Tribunal, and a registered patent attorney in New Zealand and Australia. He was for 4 years until June 2011 the Chairman of the Board of Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and for 3 years until 2017 an appointee of the UN Secretary General to the Multistakeholder Advisory Group on Internet Governance. He has been a member of the Rulings Panel since March 2008 and was Deputy Chair between July 2008 and August 2011.
Geraldine Baumann has 30 years experience in the electricity sector. She was General Counsel at the Electricity Corporation of NZ from 1987 to 1999 and then CEO of ECNZ - Residual for a year. Since that time she has been on the Board of EECA (from 2001 to 2007, including a period as Deputy Chair), the Board of Genesis Energy (2002 to 2008), and a member of the Board of Inquiry to consider the National Policy Statement for Renewable Energy (2008-2009).
Nicola Wills is a Wellington lawyer with extensive experience in commercial dispute resolution, as a Tribunal adjudicator and in the electricity sector (including an in-house role for Transpower, and advising the Market Surveillance Committee (a predecessor to the Rulings Panel). She has practised at the bar, in private firms and as a lawyer in the public service.
Susan Roberts has over 30 years commercial experience, including 16 years in the energy sector carrying out senior level management and consultancy roles with Contact Energy, NGC, Genesis Energy and ECNZ. She was appointed to the Advisory Panel for the coalition Government's Review of Electricity Pricing by the Minister of Energy and Resources in 2018.
John O'Sullivan has been a member of the Rulings Panel since it was established in 2004. He is a strategic business unit leader with broad management skills with a focus on the energy sector in a range of environments, both in New Zealand and overseas. This has included operational strategy management as General Manager Thermal and General Manager Geothermal at Contact Energy, and a focus on geothermal development at Might River Power. He has provided consulting services in Singapore, India and Australia. His industry reform experience meant interfacing with a wide range of organisations and services, both technical and scientific. He served as a board member of Transpower from 1991 to 1994, and the New Zealand Geothermal Association from 2002 to 2005.
The Authority’s contact for the Rulings Panel is the General Manager Legal and Compliance.