NPGA State Director Update – Summer 2023

As your elected State Director, I wanted to provide you with an update on the activities at the most recent NPGA Board of Directors meeting and Propane Days, held June 4 – 7 in Washington, DC.

NPGA’s Marketer Section discussed issues of importance to all propane industry members and heard from experts about renewable propane technology, workforce trends, railroad safety, and gas stove policies. Association members also visited Capitol Hill and elected new officers. I encourage you to read my report.

Thank you for the opportunity to represent you.

Kara Tucker
Koppy’s Propane

See below or click HERE to read the full report on the NPGA website.

Jeff Stewart Appointed as NPGA Chair; NPGA Officers Sworn In

From June 4 – 7, NPGA hosted its annual Board meeting and Propane Days Capitol Hill meetings. The week kicked off with State Propane Gas Association Presidents and Executive Directors from around the country meeting with NPGA leadership to discuss pressing policy issues, both federal and across the states, with the largest emphasis on combatting anti-gas laws, regulations, and codes. The PropanePAC hosted an evening reception at Tudor Place, an historic Washington, DC property once home to descendants of Martha Washington.

On June 5, at the Marketers’ meeting, NPGA hosted Dr. Paula Gant, President of GTI Energy.  GTI Energy is a leading research organization that manages a tremendous collection of propane-related emissions data and is currently leading research in a renewable propane technology called Cool LPG.  NPGA Board members and guests also heard from Tucker Perkins who provided an update on PERC’s activities and Mike Rush, head of safety and operations for the American Association of Railroads, who spoke about the policy aftermath of the East Palestine, Ohio incident and the threatened labor strikes from last fall.  NPGA moderated a gas stoves policy panel with coalition partners representing the natural gas and appliance manufacturing industries.  NPGA’s final pre-Board meeting speaker was a representative of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, who shared data on workforce trends.

Outgoing Board Chair Michelle Bimson Maggi presided over the Annual Meeting and summer Board Meeting. She gave remarks on her year in leadership and presented awards and citations. Steve Kaminski, NPGA’s President and CEO, spoke to the Board about NPGA’s increasing role in using litigation to combat laws that threaten propane usage and predicted the need for litigation to ramp up throughout the year.

The NPGA Board of Directors then selected its officers for the upcoming year: Mr. Jeff Stewart of Blue Star Gas as Chair, Mr. Tom Van Buren of Meritum Energy Holdings as Chair-Elect, Mr. Mike Hopsicker of Ray Murray as Vice Chair, and Ms. DD Alexander of Global Gas as Treasurer.


Newly appointed NPGA Board of Directors Chair Jeff Stewart presented a gavel to outgoing Chair Michelle Bimson Maggi. He then closed the meeting with a challenge to all members of the propane industry to lead by example by maximizing their own usage of the product that provides our livelihoods.

Propane Days

On June 6 and 7, members of the propane industry headed to Capitol Hill for Propane Days. NPGA’s legislative staff briefed the group on conducting successful meetings with Members of Congress and their staff. Association members also learned about the propane industry’s top policy initiatives on Capitol Hill, which range from protecting consumer energy choice to the Farm Bill reauthorization and annual appropriations.  Attendees then held a series of individual Capitol Hill meetings with over 200 Members of Congress in both the House and Senate.  Feedback was positive—Members of Congress and their staff were receptive to hearing our messages and learning more about the propane industry from companies operating in their districts. NPGA thanks everyone who participated in these advocacy efforts and the state executives who were instrumental in scheduling the meetings.

On the evening of June 6, NPGA hosted a barbeque reception in the Rayburn House Office Building. Hundreds of Congressional staff from across the country and approximately a dozen Members of Congress attended the reception, including representatives of districts in Arizona, California, Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon, and Virginia.

These Capitol Hill meetings were extremely timely as Congress was slated to vote on two distinct gas stove-related bills, one on June 6 and another on June 7. Having local boots on the ground was important and effective in communicating propane’s messages to a significant number of lawmakers.

Awards and Citations

At the NPGA Board Meeting, outgoing Chair Michelle Bimson Maggi awarded Chair’s citations to five individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the industry: Christina Armentano of Paraco Gas, Tom Clark of the Rocky Mountain Propane Association, Daniel Dixon of Energy Distribution Partners, Nash McMahan of Tri-Gas & Oil, and Warren Patterson, formerly of AmeriGas. She shared through personal, heartfelt, and funny remarks how each person exemplifies excellence in the propane industry.

NPGA awarded the State Director of the Year award to the late John W. Brooks III.  John served in every capacity for the Missouri Propane Gas Association and Missouri’s PERC. At the time of his passing, he had recently accepted the nomination to serve his 17th year as Missouri’s State Director. Brian Brooks accepted the award on behalf of the Brooks family.

NPGA awarded the Bill Hill Award to Deb Grooms, recently retired Executive Director of the Iowa Propane Gas Association, in recognition of her years of dedicated service to the industry.




John Cadenhead, outgoing Chair of the Technology, Safety, and Standards committee, and DD Alexander, outgoing Chair of NPGA’s Propane Supply & Logistics committee both received Committee Chair awards.

NPGA Welcomes New Directors

Connor Alexander Global Gas Producer & Wholesaler Director
Jim Blake Eastern Propane Rhode Island Director
Angela Branchi Grammer Logistics Transportation & Storage Director
John Corallo Home Gas International Section Director
Frank Edwards Coles Energy Ohio Director
Amanda Gage Intermountain Trucking Utah Director
Heather Granzin AmeriGas Propane LP Chair, Propane Supply & Logistics
Mike Hayden Co-Alliance Indiana Director
Stephanie Hennen Lakes Gas District 3 Director
Ray Kazakewich R.E. Michel Company Distributor Director
Paul Ladner AmeriGas Propane LP Director-at-Large
Cinch Munson Oberon Fuels Producer & Wholesaler Director
Rita Pecilunas Otodata Manufacturers Director
Ryan Roper NGL Energy Partners Producer & Wholesaler Director
David Schmidt Fisher LP Gas Equipment Manufacturers Director
Jeff Stanton Superior Plus Propane Connecticut Director
Nicole Sullivan Anderson Propane Services Director-at-Large
Erich Wolf Cavagna Group Chair, Technology, Safety & Standards
Mark Zimora Tankfarm LLC Services Section Director


Board of Director Elections – Slate of Nominees

In compliance with the Association’s election procedures, you are hereby notified of the report of the Nominating Committee, which has nominated candidates for the 2023-2024 Board of Directors Elections. The nominations received were unanimously approved at the Board of Directors meeting on March 30, 2023.

In accordance with the Bylaws, members of the Association are hereby advised of your right to name additional candidates for any office. Additional candidates may be nominated by 10 more members, in good standing, filing a written nomination with the Secretary, which will automatically add their name to the list of nominees submitted by the Nominating Committee. (Please note: District Directors must be eligible to serve in the district they are being nominated for.)  The deadline to submit is 5pm, Monday, May 8, 2023. Click HERE for Nomination Form

Nominees must be PAPGA members in good standing. The written nomination must include the nominee’s name, company, address, phone, email, and the Board position to which the nominee is being nominated. Nominations received after 5pm on Monday, May 8, 2023, cannot be considered.

Ballots will be sent via email through Election Buddy to PAPGA members having the right to vote on or about May 19, 2023. Electronic voting must be completed no later than 5pm, Friday, June 16, 2023.

2023 Board of Director Elections Slate of Nominees

District Directors: Two-Year Position

District 1           Shelby Bennett, AmeriGas Propane

District 2           Mike Salansky, III, Stuck Enterprises, Inc. 

District 3           Jonathan Kammerer, Ferrellgas

District 4           Randy Witmer, Koppy’s Propane

District 6           Greg Smith, Bluhm’s Gas Sales

District 7           Jay Gorzkowski, Modern Gas Sales

District 8           John Cepiel, Independence Propane

Directors at Large:  Voted on Every Year

Dale Aldrich, Bergquist, Inc.                                       Brian Doran, Alliance Energy Services

Pat Shay, Tarantin Industries, Inc.                             Jim Wiltshire, FW Webb

The Nominating Committee will certify the results of the election. The candidate receiving the most votes will be elected. The new Board will take office at the end of the Board of Directors meeting at the Annual Meeting on June 22, 2023.

Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association

Hugh Rich, III
President, Board of Directors


Contact your State Representative NOW to support Energy Choice!

The Pennsylvania State Senate has recently passed legislation reintroduced by Senator Gene Yaw, prohibiting local governments from dictating the energy choices of their constituents.

Senate Bill 143 passed the Senate by an overwhelming 40-9 vote on March 8. It will now go to the House, where it will be referred to the House Local Government Committee.

This same legislation passed both the House and Senate last session but was unfortunately vetoed by then Governor Tom Wolf. With a new Democrat Majority in the House and a new Governor (Josh Shapiro), the prognosis for this bill is less clear. Therefore, it is VITAL you email your local House member to support the legislation.

During debate on the bill in the Senate, one Senator pointed out that local governments should not be allowed to impose financial hardships on their citizens, by requiring conversions to electricity, without any funding mechanism. This is just one key reason why this legislation is needed.

Please send your letter TODAY!  Let PAPGA know what response you receive, so we can count votes and build a groundswell of support to persuade the Committee Chair to advance the bill.

You may share this with others – team members, customers, family, and friends. Once you click the link below – you’ll be taken to the ‘Legislative Action Center’ where you’ll find a pre-written letter. Please review the message content before sending and feel free to add your own story to personalize your letter.

Click HERE to send letter.

NPGA State Director Update – Winter 2023

As your elected State Director, I wanted to provide you with an update on the activities at the most recent NPGA Board of Directors meeting, held January 30 – February 1, 2023, in New Orleans.

NPGA’s committees and sections held meetings and discussed issues of importance to all propane industry members. I encourage you to read my report.

Thank you for the opportunity to represent you.

Kara Tucker
Koppy’s Propane

See below or click HERE to read the full report on the NPGA website.

2023 Winter Board of Directors Meeting Highlights

NPGA hosted a panel on renewable propane production, moderated by NPGA President & CEO Steve Kaminski and featuring Gary Grimes of World Energy, Curtis Powers of Chevron/REG, Warren Patterson of UGI, and Tucker Perkins of PERC.  They discussed matters ranging from factors dictating whether renewable propane produced as a byproduct is sent into the market or used internally, to feedstock diversity, to production processes.

Steve Kaminski hosted a lively fireside chat with Shannon Watt, the Canadian Propane Association President & CEO.  They discussed matters ranging from electrification policies to cross-border supply and logistics.

Guest speaker Stan Hayes, CEO of Operation BBQ Relief, discussed the non-profit’s widespread efforts to provide hot meals in the aftermath of natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods, and how the propane community has played an important role.  If you want to help, please go to:

Section & Committee Meeting Updates

Marketers Section

The Marketers Section held virtual breakout sessions across our eight districts in advance of the Board of Directors meeting. During these meetings, marketers discussed regional legislative and regulatory concerns facing the industry. Section Chair, Daniel Dixon, reiterated that all marketers are invited to participate in these district breakout sessions.

District 8 Director Thomas Manson provided a summary of the district reports. PERC’s Eric Kuster updated attendees on the Council’s recent activities of note. The Section also hosted a panel on disaster and emergency preparedness. The panelists encouraged all propane marketers to adequately prepare for, and communicate during, a natural disaster such as a hurricane.

Additionally, the Marketers Section is now soliciting applications to serve on NPGA’s Executive Committee for the upcoming Association year.

Governmental Affairs Committee

The Governmental Affairs Committee met for its winter meeting to discuss pressing advocacy matters impacting the propane industry. As is customary, the Committee broke into three task force sessions – federal legislative, federal regulatory, and state.

In the legislative session, NPGA staff provided updates on success from the 117th Congress, including securing access to funding opportunities in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, extending the Alternative Fuel Tax Credit, and recent wins in the FY23 Appropriations and National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). For 2023, NPGA will continue Appropriations and NDAA strategies and advocate for propane’s inclusion in this year’s Farm Bill and FAA reauthorization.

During the Regulatory Breakout, association staff briefed members on various rulemakings from the Department of Energy, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Department of Homeland Security. Association staff focused on recent accomplishments and previews of anticipated rulemakings and regulatory strategy for 2023. Highlights included an upcoming CFATS rulemaking, FMCSA hours of service clarifications, and consumer cooking appliances efficiency standards.

Lastly, in the State breakout session, association staff provided an overview of the 2023 state legislative landscape, including opportunities to expand energy choice protections, safeguard gas cooking equipment, and secure industry exemptions from product stewardship initiatives. The group also discussed efforts taken by local governments to ban new gas infrastructure and encourage the electrification of buildings. NPGA is currently tracking such activity by more than 100 municipalities and counties across 15 states. These ordinances seek to eliminate propane’s ability to serve as a fuel option for new construction.

Propane Supply & Logistics Committee

RBN’s Todd Root gave a presentation on the current winter heating season and focused on the driving factor for the remainder of the season: exports. NPGA staff Ben Nussdorf and Kate Gaziano provided updates on several regulatory matters. Ms. Gaziano discussed FERC’s pipeline affiliates regulation and provided past NPGA action and the plan moving forward. Mr. Nussdorf requested information and routes to supply points during emergencies to provide to FMCSA to fill the knowledge gap within the agency and provided an update on the five-year special exemption request NPGA submitted to FMCSA. NPGA is still awaiting the decision from FMCSA on the special exemption and has marketing materials and informational webinars set for when the decision is released.

Technology, Safety & Standards Committee

The Board approved Technology, Safety & Standards Committee proposal Tdc-1908, a proposal to be made to NFPA 58 that would clarify misconceptions that some authorities have regarding a “required color” for tracer wire that is buried with underground plastic pipe to enable the pipe to be located easily and avoid damage when excavation activities are occurring. The proposal will clarify that there is no required color for the tracer wire. This proposal will be submitted for the 2026 edition of NFPA 58.


The PropanePAC Steering Committee met to discuss last year’s successful fundraising and engagement efforts and the PAC’s impacts during the 2021-2022 election cycle. Committee members brainstormed different opportunities to increase involvement with the PAC through peer-to-peer outreach and education. Additionally, the Committee discussed efforts to grow the PAC by achieving the $250,000 fundraising goal for the 2023-2024 election cycle.

In addition to the meeting, the PropanePAC hosted a reception on Bourbon Street, open to all association members and attended by more than 200 people. Events like this help generate awareness of the PAC’s vital role as one of the association’s most critical advocacy tools.

NPGF Scholarship Committee

The National Propane Gas Foundation (NPGF) Scholarship Committee met in New Orleans with more than 30 members and guests attending. The Committee provides financial oversight, raises funds, and reviews applications for the scholarship program.

NPGF finances are healthy and the committee passed a budget for the coming year. Attendees also received updates on 2022’s successful fundraising activities and the scholarship application and selection process.  The current application for the 2023 – 2024 academic year closes on February 15.

The transition to a Standing Committee of NPGA is moving forward. As part of the transition, new members are encouraged to join the Scholarship Committee, and the meeting was well-attended by those interested in learning more.

Please contact Maril Olson, NPGF Scholarship Program Manager, for additional information.

Women in Propane Council

Over 40 enthusiastic attendees were at the recent WIP Council meeting in New Orleans where the meeting was led by new Chair Paula Summers of Vision Financial Group. There is lots of good news to report:

  • the organization is on solid financial ground and membership is up;
  • there has been positive feedback on the new WIP podcast series Through the Leadership Lens;
  • a second webinar is scheduled for February 17th at 1:00 pm ET on Attracting and Retaining Youth in the Propane Industry;
  • DiSC continues to be an important program for developing career skills;
  • WIP ambassadors are working with over 13 state associations;
  • Expo Leadership Forum with Kathleen Votaw Quinn and Roundtable Discussions with Tucker Perkins and Bridget Kidd are confirmed; and
  • the Knowledge Exchange program will be promoted via sign-up campaigns.

To find out more about this dynamic organization and the programs and events on offer, go to And remember, WIP is for everyone!

NPGA Welcomes New Directors

  • Kevin Bennett, DCC Propane, Colorado State Director
  • Brian Brooks, Brooks Gas Co. Inc., Missouri State Director
  • Alex Gallard, Blue Star Gas, Washington State Director
  • Lance Dalton, Quality Steel, Manufacturers Section Director
  • Bruce Thompson, Thompson Energy Insurance Services, Services Section Director

Message from the President

Thank you for electing me to serve as President of the Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association for the next two years. I am truly honored.

I also want to take this opportunity to publicly acknowledge and recognize our Immediate Past President, For the past two year, Beth Donovan, Shipley Energy, has led the Association with tenacity and dedication. She distinguished herself as a judicious steward of our Association and never flinched in the face of difficult decisions as there were many with COVID-19.  Beth will be in PAPGA’s history books as the Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association’s first woman President. 

I intend to pick up where Beth left off alongside a group of professionals who have an abundance of knowledge and experience in the propane industry. Together, with our Board of Directors and executive director, we are committed to advancing the Association and the propane industry in Pennsylvania.

However, our goals cannot be reached by Board leadership alone. We need you – our members! Your continued support, critiques, and participation will keep the Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association sustainable and relevant.

With the opportunities and challenges that come with this position, my top goal is to best serve ALL members. I will be looking for your participation and continued support as we move forward.



Hugh Rich, III

PA Propane Gas Association
Richgas, Inc.