March 24-25, 2017 | Houston, TX


Energy is an important aspect of the everyday life of Americans and our nation’s economic vitality. In 2015, energy produced in the United States provided 91% of the nation’s energy needs. U.S. energy companies produce oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear power, renewable energy and fuels, as well as electricity. In recent years, more Americans have begun considering the complexity of energy policy and how these interact with the responsible management of natural resources, climate change and quality of life for current and future generations.

Energy policy in the United States has previously focused on three major goals: assuring a secure supply of energy, keeping energy costs low, and protecting the environment. In an attempt to achieve these goals, government programs and policies have been developed to improve the efficiency with which energy is utilized, to promote the domestic production of conventional energy sources, and to develop new energy sources, particularly renewable sources. While the future of U.S. energy, natural resource management, and climate change policy at the federal level will likely continue to evolve under a new Administration, Latino policymakers can contribute to and help shape the policy discussion and solutions needed to address our nation’s current and future energy needs and their impact on the communities they serve and represent.

The NALEO Educational Fund’s National Policy Institute on Energy, Natural Resources and Climate Change: Exploring the Intersection and Shaping the Future will provided Latino policymakers with the opportunity to enhance their knowledge on current issues and discuss various policy approaches for the reliable and affordable development and use of energy while also addressing the responsible stewardship of natural resources and the future vitality of their communities.

The Institute’s program covered:

  • The New Paradigm: The Future of U.S. Energy, Natural Resource and Climate Change Policy
  • Energy Trends and Serving Today’s “New” Energy Consumer
  • Water Security and Sustainability: The Impact on Latinos
  • Clean Energy: A Discussion on Opportunities and Challenges
  • Opportunities for State and Local Leadership

The policy institute convened state legislators, local policymakers, national and state experts, private sector representatives and other key stakeholders. Institute participants had an opportunity to engage with national, regional and industry experts who helped deepen their understanding of the most pressing energy, natural resource and climate change policy issues of the day. Policymakers received timely information, learned best practices, exchanged legislative policies and ideas, strengthened governance skills that will support effective leadership, and had the opportunity to network with colleagues and experts from throughout the country.


Title Sponsors

Investor Sponsors

BP America

Edison Electric Institute


  • Friday, March 24
  • Saturday, March 25

7:45 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.
Founders Ballroom, Prefunction, Lobby Level

Institute Registration

8:00 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.
Founders Ballroom III, IV, Lobby Level


9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
Founders Ballroom I, II, Lobby Level

Welcome Remarks and Program Overview

• Hon. Pauline Medrano, Dallas County Treasurer, TX; NALEO President

9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.
Founders Ballroom I, II, Lobby Level

Session 1:


The New Paradigm: What is next for U.S. Energy, Natural Resources and Climate Change Policy?

In the first few weeks of the new Administration, President Donald Trump has reaffirmed his goals toward energy independence, increased economic growth, and bringing jobs back to the U.S. These priorities will critically affect the future of U.S. energy, natural resource and climate change policies. This session explored the changes in federal policy that state and local policymakers may expect and explored how they will affect energy production, energy use, protecting the environment and the U.S. economy.

Institute Facilitator:
Hon. Rafael Anchia, Texas State Representative; Chairman, Mexican American Legislative Caucus; Former NALEO Educational Fund Chair

Keynote Address:
Hon. Ken Salazar, Former U.S. Secretary of the Interior

• Mr. Elgie Holstein, Senior Director for Strategic Planning, Environmental Defense Fund

• Ms. Sally Kolenda, Director of External Affairs, BP America

10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Founders Ballroom I, II, Lobby Level

Session 2:


Energy Trends and Serving Today’s “New” Energy Consumer

State and local policymakers will continue to play a key role in shaping current and future policy on energy and the environment. This session provided participants with a deeper understanding of energy demand, economics, and trends with regard to consumption and how these will shape the future.

Institute Facilitator:
Hon. Rafael Anchia, Texas State Representative, Chairman, Mexican American Legislative Caucus; Former NALEO Educational Fund Chair

• Dr. Michelle Michot-Foss, Chief Energy Economist and Program Manager, Center for Energy Economics, Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin

• Mr. Eduardo Balbis, Managing Director, North America Utilities Strategy, Accenture

12:15 p.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Founders Ballroom III, IV, Lobby Level

Networking Luncheon

12:45 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Offsite Event

Energy Mobile Tour

Valero Texas City Refinery

The Valero Texas City Refinery is located on the Texas City Ship Channel, approximately 40 miles southeast of Houston.  During the visit to the Valero Texas City Refinery, NALEO participants learned more about many of the issues facing the energy sector, including national and state energy policy, energy use trends, workforce development, infrastructure, and its impact on the environment.  Participants were given a private tour of the facility.