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New director selected to lead UW School of Energy Resources

Holly Krutka (courtesy of the University of Wyoming)

CASPER, Wyo. —  A scientist and administrator who has spent much of her career advancing carbon capture has been selected to lead the University of Wyoming’s School of Energy Resources.

Holly Krutka, currently the vice president for coal generation and emissions technologies with Peabody, will succeed Mark Northam as the SER’s executive director, according to a statement from the University. Northam is retiring after nearly 13 years at the helm, as the SER’s founding director.

Krutka’s appointment was approved Wednesday by the UW Board of Trustees, following a national search by UW’s Energy Resources Council, which advises SER on priorities for research and outreach.

Krutka is scheduled to start at UW March 9.

“We’re delighted that Dr. Krutka has agreed to lead the School of Energy Resources at this important juncture in the school’s history — and at a crucial time for Wyoming’s energy industry,” UW Acting President Neil Theobald says. “We’re confident that her experience and energy will help SER continue to find solutions to the energy challenges facing our state, the nation and the world. Her experience in the coal industry will be especially valuable here in Wyoming, the nation’s leading coal producer.”

UW says that Krutka holds a bachelor’s degree and a Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma, both in chemical engineering. In her role with Peabody, much of her focus has been on carbon management strategies through application of carbon capture, use and storage. Additionally, she has worked to identify nontraditional coal-consumption opportunities.

“I look forward to leading a portfolio of academic, research and outreach programs at SER,” Krutka says. “Mark’s leadership, coupled with the expertise, passion and dedication of the faculty and staff, has laid a strong foundation to build upon. I look forward to a smooth transition and continued focus on innovative technologies and policies to support growth within Wyoming’s robust energy sectors. Through previous interactions with professionals at SER, the university and across the state, I know firsthand that people are one of Wyoming’s strongest assets. My family and I are thrilled to become part of this broader community.”

SER provides undergraduate and graduate education; conducts research on existing and emerging industry resources; and disseminates scientific, engineering and economic information to support Wyoming’s near- and long-term energy future.