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GULF STATES UTILITIES NAMES NEW CEO AND CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD

 GULF STATES UTILITIES NAMES NEW CEO AND CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
 BEAUMONT, Texas, Jan. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Joseph L. Donnelly, senior executive vice president of Gulf States Utilities Co. (NYSE: GSU), has been elected chief executive officer of the Beaumont-based utility, effective immediately, and will become chairman of the board on March 1.
 The announcement was made by Dr. E. Linn Draper, who is giving up his positions as GSU chairman, president and chief executive officer to become president of Ohio-based American Electric Power Co., the nation's second-largest electric utility.
 Donnelly, who also has been chief financial officer, becomes chief executive officer immediately. Draper will remain as chairman of the board until March 1, when Donnelly also will assume that post.
 "Joe Donnelly has been a key architect of Gulf States' continuing financial recovery," Draper said. "He is an excellent choice to lead the company as it continues to deal with a variety of financial challenges."
 Donnelly joined Gulf States in 1979 as senior vice president of finance and became executive vice president of finance later the same year. He was elected senior executive vice president and chief financial officer in 1986 and later that year was elected to the GSU board of directors.
 "I deeply appreciate this new opportunity," Donnelly said. "I look forward to continuing to work closely with our board and all our employees to plan for the future needs of our company, our shareholders and our customers."
 A Pennsylvania native, Donnelly received his bachelor of science degree in political science from the University of Scranton and his doctor of jurisprudence degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He was a law secretary for the chief justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court (1953-55) and deputy attorney general in Pennsylvania (1955-58). In 1958, he joined Pennsylvania Power & Light Co. where he held a variety of legal and financial positions, including vice president of finance, prior to joining GSU in 1979.
 Draper also joined GSU in 1979 as technical assistant to the chairman. He subsequently held a variety of technical and administrative positions before becoming president and chief executive officer in 1986 and chairman of the board in 1987.
 "My association with Gulf States has been productive, challenging and never dull," Draper said. "I regret leaving so many fine people who have helped me and this company get through some very difficult times."
 Gulf States has about 4,800 employees and serves a population of about 1.3 million in a 28,000-square-mile area between Houston and New Orleans. Annual revenues are about $1.7 billion. American Electric Power is based in Columbus, Ohio, and its 23,000 employees serve about seven million people in seven states. Annual revenues total about $5 billion.
 -0- 1/6/92
 /CONTACT: Kim McMurray of Gulf States Utilities, 409-839-2890/
 (GSU) CO: Gulf States Utilities Co. ST: Texas IN: UTI SU: PER


TS -- NY024 -- 6814 01/06/92 10:29 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 6, 1992
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