published Wednesday, February 16th, 2011, updated Feb. 16th, 2011 at 6:02 p.m.

New director named for Watts Bar project

The new director for construction of the Unit 2 reactor at the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant has headed construction on the mixed oxide fuel plant being built in South Carolina for the past four years.

TVA announced today it has hired Dave Stinson to direct the $2.5 billion program to build America’s newest nuclear reactor.

Stinson, who previously on the restart of TVA’s Browns Ferry Nuclear Power Plant, assumes the job vacated last month when former Watts Bar project director Masoud Bajestani was fired.

TVA officials declined to discuss why Bajestani was dismissed, although records indicate he improperly claimed a financial hardship to tap into his deferred compensation package and then sent $600,000 to his native Iran.

Marie Gillman has managed the Watts Bar 2 project since Jan. 28.

Ashok Bhatnagar, the TVA executive in charge of new plant projects, previously worked with Stinson at Browns Ferry.

He said hiring Stinson “will help us reach our goal to have Watts Bar Unit 2 online before the end of 2012.

“Completion of this project will help TVA achieve its vision to be a leading provider of cleaner, low-cost energy by 2020,” he said.

Details in Thursday’s Times Free Press.

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