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Atmos Energy Corporation Names Officers to Lead Acquired TXU Gas Operations.

DALLAS -- Atmos Energy Corporation (NYSE:ATO) today named R. Earl Fischer to lead the former TXU Gas distribution operations, which Atmos Energy acquired on October 1.

Fischer, 65, will serve as president of the new division while continuing to serve as Atmos Energy Corporation's senior vice president, utility operations, the position he has held since April 2000.

From 1999 to 2000, Fischer was president of Atmos Energy's Texas Division. Earlier, he was president of the company's Kentucky Division from 1989 to 1999. Fischer has been very active in economic development and in attracting new industry and jobs to Atmos Energy's service territory. He has served as president of the Kentucky State Chamber of Commerce, on the board of directors of the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce and as the leader of numerous community and charitable programs.

He began his career with Western Kentucky Gas in 1962 in accounting and held several management positions before being named the division's president. Fischer graduated with a degree in business administration from Brescia College in Owensboro, Ky.

"Earl Fischer, our most senior utility executive, will assure that we integrate the acquired TXU Gas operations well and that our customers receive the highest level of service," said Robert W. Best, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Atmos Energy Corporation. "Earl has more than 40 years of experience and a proven record of achieving superior results."

Best said that JD Woodward, Atmos Energy Corporation's senior vice president, nonutility operations, also will oversee considerably expanded operations because of the acquisition of the TXU Gas pipeline and storage operations, one of the country's largest intrastate gas pipeline systems.

Reporting to Woodward will be Richard A. Erskine, formerly vice president of natural gas supply and marketing for TXU Gas, who was named as president of Atmos Pipeline and Storage, LLC. In addition, Erskine will have functional responsibility for the acquired pipeline assets.

Erskine, 51, joined Lone Star Gas Company, the predecessor to TXU Gas, in 1974 and held management and executive positions in commercial and operational areas, including gas transportation services, planning, gas control, reservoir engineering, and gas supply. He has a business administration degree from the University of North Texas and is active in many gas industry associations.

Other division officers who will report directly to Fischer are:

John Jeffrey Hardgrave, vice president, non-metro operations. Hardgrave, 48, oversees the operation of the 5,500-mile transmission network and distribution systems serving approximately 500,000 customers outside the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area. He also directs the operation of all TXU Gas storage and transmission compression facilities.

Hardgrave joined TXU in 1979 and held various positions associated with the operation and maintenance of TXU's natural gas distribution, transmission and storage assets. He has a bachelor's degree in business administration from Dallas Baptist University and has attended Texas Tech University and the University of North Texas, studying economics.

Scott Powell, vice president, metro operations. Powell, 42, has 24 years of natural gas industry experience and has held numerous operational positions within TXU Gas since joining the company in 1980.

Powell currently serves on the Southern Gas Association Operational Roundtable Planning Committee. He is pursuing a degree in business management at Dallas Baptist University in Dallas.

Patti Richards, vice president, technical services. Richards, 48, previously served as director of engineering and construction management for TXU Gas. During her 25-year career, she has held various management positions in customer service, engineering, procurement and information technology and has served as a state lobbyist for TXU.

Richards attended Louisiana State University where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. She is a registered professional engineer in Texas and is the past president and former Young Engineer of the Year of the Fort Worth Chapter of the Texas Society of Professional Engineers.

Barbara Weathersbee, vice president, finance. Weathersbee, 45, joined TXU in May 1982. She has held various positions, including director of financial management and reporting for TXU Gas, financial manager for TXU Pipeline and assistant to the TXU Corp. chief executive and chairman.

Weathersbee graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting. She is active in the Southern Gas Association.

Ralyn Fletcher, vice president, human resources. Fletcher, 46, had served as manager, human resources, for TXU Gas. She joined TXU in May 1986 and held various positions in compensation, benefits and client support, with exclusive dedication to gas operations since 2001.

Fletcher graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. She is active in the Society for Human Resource Management.

Charles R. Yarbrough II, vice president, rates and regulatory affairs. Yarbrough, 51, previously was manager, regulatory affairs for TXU Electric Delivery and TXU Lone Star Pipeline. Before joining TXU in 1986, he served as general counsel of Maple Gas Corporation and as division counsel of Cabot Corporation.

He is the current chairperson of the Pipeline Safety and Environmental Committee of the Texas Pipeline Association and a member of the Public Utility Section of the State Bar of Texas. A graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science, he holds a juris doctorate from The Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University.

Best said a vice president of marketing for the division will be named soon.

Atmos Energy Corporation, headquartered in Dallas, is the country's largest natural-gas-only distributor, serving approximately 3.1 million gas utility customers. Atmos Energy's utility operations serve more than 1,500 communities in 12 states from the Blue Ridge Mountains in the East to the Rocky Mountains in the West. Atmos Energy's nonutility operations, organized under Atmos Energy Holdings, Inc., operate in 18 states. They provide natural gas marketing and procurement services to industrial, commercial and municipal customers and manage company-owned natural gas storage and pipeline assets, including one of the country's largest intrastate natural gas pipeline systems. For more information, visit www.atmosenergy.com.
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Date:Oct 6, 2004
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