The board election is part of the company’s succession plan, which sets out for Mr Kantor to become the CEO after current CEO, Mark Dodson, retires at the end of 2008.

Mr Kantor, who was appointed president and COO in May 2007, has previously served terms at NW Natural as executive vice president, senior vice president and vice president.

Russell Tromley, chairman of NW Natural, said: NW Natural puts great effort into its succession planning to ensure smooth transitions between leadership. Gregg will provide the board an important operational perspective. We look forward to working with him.