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The Empire District Electric: Bill Helton to retire

Staff writer | Joplin, Mo., USA | November 6, 2010
Bill HeltonNovember 5, 2010, Joplin, Mo., USA - The Empire District Electric Company announced that Bill Helton will retire from the board on April 28, 2011.
Mr. Helton has served on the Empire board of directors since 2004. He is retired chairman and CEO of New Century Energies. His career in the utility industry began in 1957 with Southwestern Public Service Company where he worked his way up from apprentice lineman to CEO/chairman of the board. He then held the position of chairman and CEO of New Century Energies and retired in 2000 becoming chairman emeritus, when New Century Energies merged with Northern States Power to become Xcel Energy.

Thomas Ohlmacher has been nominated to fill the board vacancy and will stand for election at the Company's annual meeting of stockholders on April 28, 2011.

Mr. Ohlmacher has been president and COO of Black Hills Corporation's Non-Regulated Energy Group since 2001. He began his employment with Black Hills Power in 1974. During his career, he has held positions as plant chemist, and in water management, and generation maintenance and management. As vice president of generation, beginning in 1995, to his current role as president of Black Hills' Non-Regulated Holdings, Mr. Ohlmacher has been involved in the construction planning and commercial development of 1,700 megawatts of generation including natural gas-fired, coal-fired, and renewable power generation.

As president of the non-regulated business unit, Mr. Ohlmacher has provided executive leadership for the non-regulated businesses of Black Hills Corporation. These businesses included the Wyodak Resource and Development, a coal mine located in Gillette, Wyoming; the Enserco marketing business, the wholesale gas, crude, and coal commodity trading business of Black Hills Corporation; and the Black Hills Exploration and Production Company, with production of oil and gas in the Rocky Mountain region and all the generation of the Corporation, both utility owned and non-utility owned.

Mr. Ohlmacher has spent his entire career with Black Hills Corporation which is headquartered in Rapid City, South Dakota. He previously announced his retirement from Black Hills effective March 2011. Mr. Ohlmacher received a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in 1974.