“Commodities are as close to life as you can get—and energy is essential.”

Angela Amos (MBA 2014) has always been a practical person. “Commodities are as close to life as you can get,” she says. “And energy is essential.” After completing an undergraduate degree in Afro-American Studies and Government at Harvard, Amos was one of many in an incoming class of analysts to raise her hand when a department head at Lehman Brothers asked who was interested in working on a new energy trading business. “The opportunity to build a business from nothing was really cool and special to do as a 22-year-old recent graduate,” she recalls. “That experience gave me exposure to all facets of the energy complex, but my specialty was electricity and natural gas.”

It also led to a realization: To fully understand the sector, Amos needed exposure to the physical assets that produce energy. “I wanted to work for a company that actually had power plants,” she explains. So Amos moved to Atlanta-based Mirant Energy, where she supervised a team of traders overseeing plant operations in the western half of the United States, in addition to managing relationships between the company, regional transmission organizations, and regulatory entities; when Mirant became GenOn, Amos relocated to Houston, where her focus switched to operations in the eastern regions of the country.

In the course of her work at Lehman, Mirant, and GenOn, Amos was exposed to electricity markets in all parts of the United States—a good thing, she says: “The United States is a big country, obviously, and each region’s energy infrastructure and market has evolved in its own particular way, with slightly different rules and regulations in each place.”

That broad perspective, combined with on-the-ground knowledge, has been invaluable in Amos’s current role as policy advisor to the Chairman at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the independent government agency regulating the interstate transmission of electricity, natural gas, and oil. Amos joined FERC as a financial analyst in the Office of Energy Market Regulation after graduating from HBS; in December 2017, she moved to the office of the newly-appointed Chairman Kevin J. McIntyre. “Now I have insight into all of FERC’s activities, from matters related to a single company or issue, such as electric reliability or pipelines, to the Commission’s major rulemakings. I also interact with talented staff from all parts of FERC,” she says. “Because the Chairman is one person, when you’re on his team, there’s an opportunity to make recommendations that he’ll often adopt—but he has to trust that his advisors are carefully vetting, validating, and probing available information so that the recommendations he receives make sense.”

In doing that work, Amos says she often refers to the framework of ethics, economics, and the law that she studied in Leadership & Corporate Accountability as a first-year student at HBS. “Ethically, we have to be mindful when considering the right thing to do. From the legal perspective, FERC has to ensure our regulations will hold up in court—but those regulations also have to protect the markets, which brings in the economic lens. At the end of the day, the businesses that provide energy have to make money to survive. And customers need to pay, but the rate must be just and reasonable—provisions exist so citizens can get the energy they need to live.”

Using a rigorous framework rooted in sound principles when evaluating matters before the Commission gives her peace of mind, Amos says—and seeing the impact her efforts can have is gratifying, too: “There have been a few key proceedings when I know the outcome was different because I was in the room,” she says. “That is really rewarding.”

As of April, 2019, Angela is an Energy Industry Analyst at Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

“Commodities are as close to life as you can get—and energy is essential.”

Angela Amos (MBA 2014) has always been a practical person. “Commodities are as close to life as you can get,” she says. “And energy is essential.” After completing an undergraduate degree in Afro-American Studies and Government at Harvard, Amos was one of many in an incoming class of analysts to raise her hand when a department head at Lehman Brothers asked who was interested in working on a new energy trading business. “The opportunity to build a business from nothing was really cool and special to do as a 22-year-old recent graduate,” she recalls. “That experience gave me exposure to all facets of the energy complex, but my specialty was electricity and natural gas.”

It also led to a realization: To fully understand the sector, Amos needed exposure to the physical assets that produce energy. “I wanted to work for a company that actually had power plants,” she explains. So Amos moved to Atlanta-based Mirant Energy, where she supervised a team of traders overseeing plant operations in the western half of the United States, in addition to managing relationships between the company, regional transmission organizations, and regulatory entities; when Mirant became GenOn, Amos relocated to Houston, where her focus switched to operations in the eastern regions of the country.

In the course of her work at Lehman, Mirant, and GenOn, Amos was exposed to electricity markets in all parts of the United States—a good thing, she says: “The United States is a big country, obviously, and each region’s energy infrastructure and market has evolved in its own particular way, with slightly different rules and regulations in each place.”

That broad perspective, combined with on-the-ground knowledge, has been invaluable in Amos’s current role as policy advisor to the Chairman at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the independent government agency regulating the interstate transmission of electricity, natural gas, and oil. Amos joined FERC as a financial analyst in the Office of Energy Market Regulation after graduating from HBS; in December 2017, she moved to the office of the newly-appointed Chairman Kevin J. McIntyre. “Now I have insight into all of FERC’s activities, from matters related to a single company or issue, such as electric reliability or pipelines, to the Commission’s major rulemakings. I also interact with talented staff from all parts of FERC,” she says. “Because the Chairman is one person, when you’re on his team, there’s an opportunity to make recommendations that he’ll often adopt—but he has to trust that his advisors are carefully vetting, validating, and probing available information so that the recommendations he receives make sense.”

In doing that work, Amos says she often refers to the framework of ethics, economics, and the law that she studied in Leadership & Corporate Accountability as a first-year student at HBS. “Ethically, we have to be mindful when considering the right thing to do. From the legal perspective, FERC has to ensure our regulations will hold up in court—but those regulations also have to protect the markets, which brings in the economic lens. At the end of the day, the businesses that provide energy have to make money to survive. And customers need to pay, but the rate must be just and reasonable—provisions exist so citizens can get the energy they need to live.”

Using a rigorous framework rooted in sound principles when evaluating matters before the Commission gives her peace of mind, Amos says—and seeing the impact her efforts can have is gratifying, too: “There have been a few key proceedings when I know the outcome was different because I was in the room,” she says. “That is really rewarding.”

As of April, 2019, Angela is an Energy Industry Analyst at Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.