New leader takes the helm at NV Energy

NV Energy has a new boss.

President and CEO Paul Caudill officially took charge of Nevada’s main electric utility today, after chief executive Michael Yackira retired Monday as planned.

Caudill joined NV Energy as president in December when billionaire Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. bought the Las Vegas-based utility for $5.6 billion cash. Before that, Caudill had been president of subsidiary MidAmerican Solar.

When the Buffett deal was announced last May, Yackira said he expected to remain CEO alongside other top executives.

But when the sale closed in December, he announced his retirement, and company officials said Caudill would replace him at the helm, though it wasn’t clear whether Caudill would also take the CEO title.

In an interview that month, Yackira declined to say why he was retiring, saying it was a “personal decision.” He also would not say whether his departure was part of a management shakeup by the new owners.

“Michael Yackira has helped transform NV Energy into the outstanding company it is today, and Paul will build on that foundation by leading the organization into the next era of Nevada’s energy future,” Greg Abel, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Energy, said in a prepared statement today.

MidAmerican Energy changed its name to Berkshire Hathaway Energy in April.

Yackira joined NV Energy in 2003 and took charge in 2007.

The company, which just a few years earlier was nearing bankruptcy, stayed in the black on his watch, though he also steered more cash to shareholders and earned $21 million for himself when the company was sold to Buffett.

He also undertook some big projects, including the planned closure of the Reid Gardner Generating Station, a coal-fired power plant near Moapa.