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NEW CHIEF. Adam Ingols has signed on as chief of staff for Energy Secretary Bodman. He is replacing Jeffrey Kupfer, who has been nominated to serve as deputy secretary at the department. Ingols has been working in Bodman’s office since 2005 as a senior adviser and director of strategic outreach. Earlier in his career, he worked for then-House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill. Former Energy Deputy Secretary Clay Sell resigned in late February. Energy General Counsel David Hill has been nominated for the same post at the EPA.

SOUTHERN COMFORT. The Atlanta-based utility Southern Co. has signed up Stoney Burke to work in its Washington office as director of federal legislative affairs. Burke is a former legislative assistant to Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Texas. Burke dealt with energy, trade, natural resources and agriculture for Edwards. He’s a former research assistant at his alma mater, Texas A&M.

 

NETWORKING. Melissa Merz is the vice president for communications for the New Democrat Network, a progressive think tank and advocacy group headed by Simon Rosenberg. The Oklahoma native and graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University started out as a receptionist in the late 1980s for then-Rep. George Crockett, D-Mich. Merz has worked for then-Rep. Frank McCloskey, D-Ind., and as an assistant to lobbyist Tony Podesta. She signed on with then-Rep. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., in 1995. She moved to Durbin’s Senate office with him and stayed on staff as a spokeswoman until 2002. She was communications director for Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., in 2006 and 2007. Most recently, she worked in local politics in the District of Columbia, including a stint with D.C. Attorney General Linda Singer, who resigned in December.

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