Jim Cunningham is a noted expert on the nation’s power system, with more than three decades of experience serving government and industry, providing him with an in-depth, but broad understanding of America’s electric infrastructure.
He began his career at the New York Power Authority, where he became Senior Vice President of Public affairs. He was responsible for the activities of the nation’s largest power authority in the areas of news media relations, corporate communications, government relations, community relations and public policy. While at the Power Authority, he served as the power industry’s spokesperson on the EMF (electric magnetic field) issue in the national media on shows such as ‘Nightline” and NBC Nightly News. He testified before Congressional Committees, which ultimately led to his recommended approach being included in a federal law.
He was one of the founding members of the Large Public Power Council, a coalition of the nation’s largest public power companies. He also served as Chairman of the Electric Power Research Institute’s (EPRI) Communications Committee as well as a member of its Research Advisory Committee.
Mr. Cunningham was later named President of the Pennsylvania Electric Association, representing Pennsylvania’s 10 investor-owned electric utilities on public policy issues, the most prominent of which was the implementation of the nation’s most active utility industry restructuring program.
Most recently, Mr. Cunningham led Burson-Marsteller’s energy and utility practice. His work has won several industry awards including PR Week’s Public Affairs Campaign of the Year.
Mr. Cunningham is a member of the Board of Advisors of the New York Hall of Science and a member of the Board of Directors of the American Irish Historical Society. He is a founding member of the Courage Foundation, a national organization that recognizes public officials who exhibit extraordinary courage in the performance of their public duties. The foundation has merged with the Profiles in Courage Committee, a division of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, Boston.