Kenneth L. Lay, chairman and chief executive officer of Enron, rated the most innovative company in the nation by a Fortune magazine survey, will give a public lecture at the University of Colorado at Boulder on March 11.
An early proponent of deregulating U.S. utilities, Lay was at the forefront of many changes now sweeping the industry. Deregulation of the nation's electricity companies is being discussed in Congress and in Colorado and several other states.
Lay will speak on "New Energy Visions: Enron Corp." at 7 p.m. in Macky Auditorium. The 20th annual Ben K. Miller International Business Lecture is free and open to the public.
Headquartered in Houston, Enron is the largest non-regulated provider of electric power in the United States and is one of the world's largest providers of natural gas. It is the builder of multi-billion-dollar energy projects in India and China and also has developed power plants in England, Guatemala and the Philippines.
With $15 billion in assets, Enron ranks No. 141 on Fortune magazine's list of the 500 largest U.S. corporations. It ranks No. 21 on Fortune's 1997 survey of America's most admired corporations.
A decade ago Enron was losing money. But in 1996 it made $520 million.
Lay has a doctorate in economics from the University of Houston and has taught graduate courses at George Washington University. He became chairman and CEO of Enron when Houston Natural Gas merged with InterNorth Inc. in 1985.
Lay serves on the board of directors of Compaq Computer Corp., Eli Lilly and Co. and the Trust Company of the West. He is a member of the President's Council on Sustainable Development, the Business Council, National Petroleum Council, the American Enterprise Institute and is a trustee for the John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment.
He also is one of 13 top executives lecturing at CU-Boulder this semester as part of the popular Profiles in American Enterprise class taught by Professor John Hess. Each week students study a particular industry within American business and hear a lecture from a top executive or entrepreneur in that sector. All executives pay their own way to campus for the lectures.
The Ben K. Miller International Business Lecture Series was established in 1974 by family and friends of the late Ben Miller. Miller was a 1946 graduate of the business college and one of the first Americans to cultivate business ventures in Japan. He was well known in Colorado for his Miller-Stockman western wear stores.
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