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Longtime head of U.S. Energy Association dies

Worthington led trade group since 1988


Aug. 17, 2020
By Walt Williams

Barry Worthington, executive director of the U.S. Energy Association for more than three decades, died Friday at his home in Maryland, the group announced. He was 66.

Worthington joined USEA in 1988 from the Thomas Alva Edison Foundation, where he was vice president. During his time at the association, he grew the group’s budget from $250,000 to more than $8 million, tripled membership and increased staff from two to 40 employees, according to his LinkedIn profile. He also helped negotiate more than $200 million in government grants for energy companies. The cause of death wasn’t provided.

“USEA evolved to become the influential nonprofit which serves to support the U.S. federal government’s dedication to bring energy access to millions of global citizens without it,” USEA Chairman Sheila Hollis said in a statement. “Under Barry’s leadership, USEA became the central convening force and educational platform in the U.S. energy community, bringing together a spectrum of energy leaders.”

Edison Electric Institute President Tom Kuhn said in a separate statement that his group was “shocked and saddened” by news of Worthington’s death.

"It is not an exaggeration to say that Barry was the heart and soul of the USEA, and his loss will be deeply felt throughout the association and energy communities he called home,” Kuhn said.

Worthington is survived by his wife, Louise, and two children.