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Biden nominates Huntsville attorney Joe Ritch for TVA board

HUNTSVILLE — Joe Ritch, the first Alabamian to serve as Tennessee Valley Authority board chair, has been nominated by President Biden to serve on the agency’s board of directors.

Biden had nominated Huntsville businesswoman Kim Lewis for the position, but she withdrew her name to run for Alabama state Senate.

Ritch, who was nominated by then-President Obama in 2013, served on the TVA board from 2013-17, including a four-year tenure as chairman.

Board members must be confirmed by the Senate. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-AL, offered his endorsement on Twitter.

“Congratulations to Joe Ritch … on being nominated by the President to serve on the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Board of Directors,” Shelby tweeted. “Joe previously served in this capacity and was once chairman of the TVA Board. His experience would serve TVA well.”

TVA is a federally owned electric utility corporation. Its service area covers all of Tennessee, portions of Alabama, Mississippi, and Kentucky, and small areas of Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia.

Ritch led the Tennessee Valley Base Realignment Commission that led to about 4,700 jobs being relocated to the Huntsville region. A graduate of the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Ritch founded the University of Alabama-Huntsville hockey program and served on the University of Alabama System board of trustees.

Ritch is an attorney specializing in issues related to government contractors in the defense and aerospace industry.

Recently, Ritch served on the boards of CAS, Axometrics, and Perkins Technical Services. He was also on the advisory board of Boneal Aerospace; and he was a leader in the efforts to relocate the U.S. Space Command to Redstone Arsenal.

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