The Fuels Institute Announces Board of Directors, Officers and Staff

Fuels Institute Press Release | Feb 19, 2013

ALEXANDRIA, VA – The Fuels Institute today announced its Board of Directors, the election of officers and the appointment of its executive director.

Incorporated last week in Virginia, the Fuels Institute is a non-profit, research-oriented think tank dedicated to evaluating the market issues related to consumer vehicles and the fuels that power them. Its governing structure incorporates a diverse set of stakeholders including, but not limited to, fuel retailers, fuel producers and refiners, alternative and renewable fuel producers, automobile manufacturers, environmental advocates, consumer organizations, academics, government entities and others with expertise in the fuels and automotive industries.

The Fuels Institute’s inaugural directors are:

  • ​Bill Douglass, managing partner, Douglass Distributing Co. (Sherman, TX)
  • Norman Herrera, manager of corporate development, Chesapeake Energy Corporation (Oklahoma City, OK)
  • Jay Ricker, chair/owner, Ricker’s (Anderson, IN)
  • Ron Sabia, president & COO, Gulf Oil, Cumberland Gulf Group of Companies (Framingham, MA)
  • Norman Turiano, principal, Turiano Strategic Consulting LLC (Cape Coral, FL)
  • Michael Whatley, executive vice president, Consumer Energy Alliance (Washington, D.C.)
  • Bob Wimmer, national manager of energy & environmental research, Toyota Motor North America Inc. (Washington, D.C.)

In addition, John Eichberger was named executive director of the Fuels Institute; he will direct its research projects and oversee day-to-day operations. Eichberger currently serves as vice president of government relations at NACS and will retain his position at NACS while serving as executive director of the Fuels Institute.

The Fuels Institute also announced its election of officers. Bill Douglass was elected chairman of the Board, Jay Ricker was elected treasurer and John Eichberger was elected as secretary.

The Fuels Institute will commission and publish comprehensive, fact-based research projects that address the issues identified by the affected stakeholders. These projects will help to inform both business owners considering long-term investment decisions and policymakers considering legislation and regulations affecting the market.


The Fuels Institute​ is an independent think tank founded and managed by NACS. It was established in February 2013 to deliver comprehensive and balanced research and analysis concerning fuels, vehicles and related policy issues in order to create a market in which consumers can safely, conveniently and affordably purchase the fuels they desire.

Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 149,000 stores across the country, posted $681 billion in total sales in 2011, of which $486 billion were motor fuels sales. Convenience stores sell an estimated 80% of the fuels purchased in the United States.