President and CEO
Zin Smati is President and CEO of GDF SUEZ North America, Inc., a subsidiary of the GDF SUEZ Group, and serves as GDF SUEZ’s North American regional manager. He joined the company in 2001 as Executive Vice President of Strategy. The following year, he was named President and CEO of the company’s retail electricity business. Prior to joining GDF SUEZ, Smati held various executive positions in a number of energy companies, including President and CEO of BP Amoco Global Power, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Marketing for Amoco Power, Vice President of Worldwide Power Development for Arco, and Manager of International Development for National Power, U.K. Smati holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Sheffield University, England; a master’s degree in business administration from Henley Management College, Oxfordshire, England; and a doctorate from Brunel University, West London, England.
Executive Vice President of Business Development
Karim Barbir is Executive Vice President of Business Development for GDF SUEZ Energy North America. In this role, Barbir is responsible for all business development initiatives in North America, including natural gas-fired, wind, and solar power generation developments. He also has oversight of the company’s existing power and natural gas operations in Canada. In his current role since October 2012, Barbir has been with the Group since 1999. Previously he worked with Amoco Production Company in Houston, Amoco Canada’s Treasury Group in Calgary, Alberta, and Dome Petroleum Limited in Calgary. Barbir holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering (Honors) from McGill University in Montreal, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley.
Deputy Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President
Brenda Bayer is Deputy Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President and is a member of the senior leadership team guiding business development and other business matters for GDF SUEZ Energy North America. She leads the Business Control and Tax teams for all four of the company’s business lines in the United States, Canada and Mexico and has been with the Group since 2006. Bayer has nearly 30 years of combined experience in the energy industry and at KPMG Peat Marwick. She is a certified public accountant and a member of the Texas Society of CPAs and American Institute of CPAs. She holds a bachelor’s degree, with honors, from Sam Houston State University.
Executive Vice President of Strategy, Risk and Portfolio
Paul Cavicchi’s responsibilities include contributing to the long-term positioning of the company by ensuring an understanding of the external environment and business drivers. He also oversees the Acquisitions, Investments and Financial Advisory group and Information Technology. Prior to his current role, Cavicchi served as head of Business Development for nearly 20 years. Cavicchi began his career as an environmental engineer with the Water Supply and Pollution Control Commission for the State of New Hampshire. Cavicchi holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Tufts University and a Master of Environmental Engineering from the University of Massachusetts. He also earned a Master of Business Administration from the University of Virginia.
Senior Vice President and General Counsel
Bart Clark is Senior Vice President and General Counsel for GDF SUEZ Energy North America. Clark is a former partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Hunton & Williams, where he was a member of the Corporate and Securities and Project Finance Teams. Clark also served in various legal capacities in coal and power companies before joining the company in 2002. He has 30 years of legal experience and a bachelor’s degree in English from Washington and Lee University. He holds a law degree from The University of Texas School of Law.
Chief Financial Officer
Patrick Gaussent began his current role for GDF SUEZ Energy North America in September 2010, after serving as Vice President of Business Control for GDF SUEZ in Paris. Prior to the merger of SUEZ and Gaz de France, he worked in Strategic Planning for Gaz de France. He served on the merger integration team and has been with the Group since 2005. He holds a master’s degree in finance and industrial and technology management from EMLYON Business School and degrees in public law and politics from Pantheon-Sorbonne University in Paris.
President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Resources NA
Sam Henry is President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Resources NA, a business unit of GDF SUEZ Energy North America, responsible for retail electricity sales to small and large commercial and industrial customers in the United States. Henry has more than 30 years of experience in the energy industry, with a particular focus on commodity hedging and risk management. He is a member of the Global Association of Risk Professionals and has been a member of the New York Mercantile Exchange advisory committees on propane, natural gas and electricity trading. Henry holds a degree in environmental studies from Baylor University and has attended executive education courses at the University of California, Berkeley and Carnegie Mellon University.
President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Generation NA
Herman Schopman is President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Generation NA, a business unit of GDF SUEZ Energy North America, Inc. Schopman is responsible for operating power generation assets in North America, including approximately 13,500 MW of electric generation capacity. Prior to his current position, Schopman spent 20 years with the company in various roles related to the engineering, operation, maintenance and construction of power facilities. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering at Penn State University in 1982, and is a Licensed Professional Engineer in the State of Pennsylvania.
President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Marketing NA
Stefaan Sercu is President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy Marketing NA, a business unit of GDF SUEZ Energy North America. He oversees all commercial activities surrounding the merchant power generation plants and hedging of all commodity price risks for the company. Employed with the Group for the last 15 years, Sercu has also served in various other positions encompassing price forecasting, valuing proposed business development projects, hedging, and commodity risk management. Sercu holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Mons Hainaut, Belgium, and a master’s degree in marketing, with high honors, from KU Leuven, Belgium.
Senior Vice President of Human Resources
Michael Thompson is Senior Vice President of Human Resources for GDF SUEZ Energy North America. With the Group since 2001, Thompson is responsible for all Human Resources activities for North America, including recruiting and retention, compensation, benefits, organizational training and professional development, and employee relations. He also oversees Corporate Communications and Office Services. Thompson’s more than 30-year career as a human resources professional includes management in the telecommunications, information technology and staffing sectors. Thompson holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Sociology from Dana College in Blair, Nebraska.
President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Gas NA
Bob Wilson is President and CEO of GDF SUEZ Gas NA, a business unit of GDF SUEZ Energy North America. With more than 20 years experience in the natural gas and power industries, Wilson is responsible for the Group’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) business in the United States. In his 15 years with the company, Wilson established the company's North American commodity trading and marketing operations and has overseen risk management activities, business development, strategy, and commercial arrangements for the company’s LNG operation in New England. In addition, he managed international energy commodity projects and merger and acquisition activities for the Group, principally in Northern Europe and North America. He studied physics and education at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, and earned a Master of Business Administration in Global Energy from the University of Houston.