Yesterday at the Platts 12th Annual Nuclear Energy Conference, Darious Dixon of Politico asked NRC Commissioner William Ostendorff if he had decided whether or not he would be willing to remain of the Commission for a third term if the President chooses to nominate him again.
After expressing his deep respect for the agency and his pride in having been able to serve during a time of significant events and actions, he told the audience that he had accepted a position as a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the US Naval Academy in the political science department.
He will be teaching a course in national security and strategic affairs.
It is a great job that will enable Commissioner Ostendorff to share some of his vast experience as a former submarine and submarine squadron commanding officer, principal deputy administrator at the National Nuclear Security Administration and six years as a commissioner at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
His patient, calm, and knowledgable leadership will be missed. It will be challenging to find someone with the breadth of experience that he brought to the position. After all, how many people have more than 20 years of experience operating and maintaining nuclear power plants and have a law degree with bar membership in two states?
There are, however, hundreds of solid candidates available. Given the timing of the departure just 5 months before the Presidential election, I hope our political leaders resist the temptation to allow the Commission to return to another period of minimum manning at just three commissioners.