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Abayomi Carmichael named new Regulatory Authority CEO

Abayomi Carmichael, the senior manager of energy at the Regulatory Authority of Bermuda (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

The Regulatory Authority’s senior manager for energy will be promoted to the role of chief executive, the board of commissioners have announced — the fifth appointee in just ten years.

Abayomi Carmichael will assume the RA’s top post January 1, 2023, simply the next in a line of many who have sat in the hot seat in just a decade of the RA’s existence.

The RA said Tuesday: “Mr Carmichael’s key competencies and expertise will assist the RA in its current and future needs to meet both its statutory and additional functions, in its onboarding, and to promote innovation and develop economic conditions that enhance opportunities in the economy for all.”

Mr Carmichael was last week at the head of an RA publicity effort to spur public comment on the Retail Tariff Design Restructuring Report, which aims to re-evaluate how electricity bills are determined. The public consultation remains open until November 21.

His new appointment follows the introduction of government legislation, The Fuels Bill 2022, which seeks to bring the regulation of the fuel sector under the remit of the authority.

The RA is already regulating electronic communications, electricity and, more recently, submarine communications cables.

Bermuda’s multi-sector regulator was established to be responsible for any networked industry deemed appropriate to be regulated, Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban has said.

Mr Carmichael replaces Denton Williams, who headed the authority before suddenly resigning this summer.

A month ago, Mr Williams was appointed chief executive officer of the BAC group of companies.

That, together with the fact that the RA would be without a confirmed CEO for some six months, even as it was taking on new responsibilities, suggest that his exit was abrupt.

Mr Williams had been appointed to the post after the 2018 departure of Matthew Copeland, who was later reported to be paid a year's salary as an employment settlement, after he left the organisation.

The payment — thought to have been at least $220,000 — was after Mr Copeland had led the RA for less than two years, before leaving in February 2018.

Mr Copeland was one of three people who held the chief executive post for less than two years between 2012 and 2018.

The authority's first chief executive, Philip Micallef, was appointed in October 2012 and the RAB started operations in January 2013.

By September 2014, “for personal reasons”, he was gone.

Robert Watson took over in January 2015. But nine months later, he was also gone for personal reasons.

Kyle Masters, then a legal adviser to the RA, became interim chief executive, as he also did between the two previous incumbents.

Mr Copeland was appointed in March 2016 and stepped down in February 2018, when Aaron Smith took the role on an acting basis.

Mr Smith eventually launched a civil suit against the authority for $74,404 in compensation after his $250,000 contract was cut short.

Denton Williams left a COO job at Ascendant Group, the then parent company of Belco, and joined the RA in January 2019 as CEO.

He was chief executive of the RA for about three-and-a-half years.

The RA Board of Commissioners appoints chief executives to serve for three years, but they can be reappointed for one or more terms under the Regulatory Authority legislation.

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Published November 02, 2022 at 8:01 am (Updated November 02, 2022 at 8:01 am)

Abayomi Carmichael named new Regulatory Authority CEO

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