Commissioner Lauren “Bubba” McDonald

Commissioner Since: January 1, 2009
Elected: 1998, 2008; Re-elected: 2014, 2020
Serves Through: December 31, 2026
Republican, Clarkesville, Georgia
Commissioner from District 4 MAP

McDonald, who served 20 years as a state Representative, was appointed to the Commission in June 1998 by Governor Zell Miller to fill a vacated post and then re-elected in a special mid-term election in November 1998. He held the seat until 2002. In 2008 and in 2014, Georgians again elected McDonald to serve on the Commission.

McDonald has a deep knowledge of the energy industry. He puts that knowledge to work as a member of the Electric Committee of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners and as an executive member of the Nuclear Waste Strategy Coalition.

During his time on the Commission McDonald has presided over the advent of solar power in Georgia resulting in the state becoming one of the top five fastest growing in the nation for solar energy. He has accomplished this through a conservative and thoughtful free-market approach without putting upward pressure on rates and without state-sponsored financial incentives. In 2013, Georgia had virtually no solar power on the grid. McDonald was able to garner support to add 525 megawatts of solar energy to the portfolio of the state’s investor owned utility. Currently, utility companies are erecting solar power facilities that will provide a total of 3,600 megawatts of solar energy by the end of 2024. McDonald has also supported the construction of solar facilities at six of Georgia’s military bases, contributing to national security and helping to protect the bases from future base closure proposals.

McDonald is a graduate of the University of Georgia with a BBA in Business. He also served six years in the Georgia Air National Guard. He owns businesses in the private sector and is married to Shelley McDonald. He was married to the late Sunny Nivens McDonald for 45 years. He has a son, Lauren, three grandchildren, and four step-grandchildren.

Date Title
November 30, 2022 Vogtle’s nuclear reactors expected to start up soon
October 9, 2021 Monroe County residents celebrate broadband connection
February 19, 2021 How Resilient is Georgia's Power Grid?
February 16, 2021 Is Georgia susceptible to rolling blackouts during extreme cold weather? Here’s what experts say
January 6, 2020 Chairman McDonald Winds Solar Advocacy Award
September 19, 2018 Georgia Congressional Delegation needs to support nuclear waste site
May 23, 2018 Opinion: Congress Needs to Pass the Nuclear Waste Funding Bill
January 24, 2018 McDonald Statement on Imposition of Tariffs on Solar Cell Imports
September 25, 2017 Opinion: Why the 201 Solar Tariff is a Bad Idea
August 16, 2017 McDonald Testifies Before International Trade Commission in Opposition to Higher Tariffs on Solar Panels
August 16, 2017 Atlanta Business Chronicle : Georgia Commissioner: Tariffs would bring solar industry to 'standstill'
August 15, 2017 Testimony of Commissioner Lauren “Bubba” McDonald Georgia Public Service Commission Before the International Trade Commission August 15, 2017
March 29, 2017 McDonald Applauds Passage of Nuclear Waste Resolution by Georgia State Senate
February 14, 2017 McDonald Says House Bill 479 Would Mean No Solar in Georgia
June 7, 2016 Commissioner McDonald Named as Delegate to 2016 Republican National Convention
October 28, 2015 Commissioner McDonald Statement on Lawsuits Challenging EPA Clean Power Plan Rule
December 16, 2014 McDonald Takes Oath of Office for New Term
October 22, 2014 Commissioner McDonald to hold News Conference on Georgia Power and U.S. Army Solar Projects
July 30, 2014 Atlanta Business Chronicle: Supporters, Critics of EPA Rule Sound Off in Atlanta, part 2
July 30, 2014 Atlanta Business Chronicle: Supporters, Critics of EPA Rule Sound Off in Atlanta, part 1
July 29, 2014 Commissioner McDonald Remarks at EPA Hearing on Proposed Clean Power Rules in Atlanta, Georgia on July 29, 2014
June 27, 2014 Solar Foundation Honors McDonald with 2014 Individual Achievement Award
May 13, 2014 Commissioner McDonald Applauds Dedication of Georgia Solar Farm
May 6, 2014 Georgia Power and U.S. Army Look to Install Solar Projects at Georgia Bases
April 14, 2014 Commissioner McDonald Joins Governor in Proclaming April 2014 as Dig Safely Month
March 18, 2014 Commission Urges Congress to Act to End Georgia Ratepayers Fees for Nuclear Waste Disposal Site
February 24, 2014 Commissioner McDonald Applauds Department of Energy Loan Guarantee Approval for Plant Vogtle Nuclear Construction Project
February 12, 2014 McDonald Briefs Federal Energy Policy Advisors on Georgia Progress in Solar Energy
February 4, 2014 McDonald Calls on Congress to Take Action on the Nuclear Waste Fund
August 1, 2013 McDonald Named to Executive Committee of Nuclear Waste Strategy Coalition
September 19, 2012 Statement from Commissioner Lauren “Bubba” McDonald, Jr. on Georgia Solar Utility, Inc. Announcement
June 9, 2012 Atlanta Business Chronicle Op-Ed “When as Adverb is Worth $3.2 Million”
March 21, 2012 TRA Welcomes Commissioner McDonald to Tennessee
March 15, 2012 Commissioner McDonald Calls for Repayment of Georgia Contributions to Nuclear Waste Fund
October 18, 2011 Commissioner McDonald Calls for Study of Renewable Portfolio Standards
June 7, 2011 McDonald Calls for Large Scale Solar Projects in Georgia
July 12, 2010 McDonald Applauds AGLR for Bringing Jobs Back to Georgia