John Padalino, the former Administrator of the United States Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) rejoins Kemp Smith LLP as a partner in the Environmental, Water and Utilities Department. Mr. Padalino most recently served as the Administrator for USDA’s Rural Utilities Service where he was engaged in public policy issues affecting the utility industry. He was responsible for managing a loan portfolio totaling over $60 billion in assets and lending to rural electric, telecommunications, and water and wastewater providers across the U.S. While at the agency, he opened RUS’s low cost electric loan program up to energy efficiency activities, small-scale renewable energy projects, and utility scale distributed generation. He has been a strong advocate for rural telecommunications carriers before the Federal Communications Commission supporting policies that provide certainty for rural carriers. He was an ally of rural water systems across the country ensuring efficient delivery of much needed infrastructure investments.

Mr. Padalino is a public finance and utilities expert working primarily with water and wastewater systems, telecommunications companies, electric cooperatives, renewable energy developers, and lenders across the United States. He helps clients with strategic planning and project development as well as financing corporate and utility operations.

From 2009 to 2012, Mr. Padalino served in several other positions at USDA from Chief of Staff to the Under Secretary for Rural Development to Acting Principal Deputy General Counsel. Prior to his service at the USDA, Mr. Padalino represented rural water districts, litigated complex commercial cases, and briefed cases before the appellate courts of Texas and the United States Courts of Appeal. Before becoming a lawyer, Mr. Padalino worked in the water and wastewater utility industry.

Mr. Padalino is recognized as a leader in economic development as he received the President’s Award from the National Rural Economic Development Association for his work in removing disincentives to electric cooperatives participation in relending activities that involve rural development loan programs and energy efficiency. Mr. Padalino holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a law degree from Rutgers School of Law.

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