Robert M. Hanna, Esquire, was named by Governor Christopher J. Christie as President to the N.J. Board of Public Utilities (BPU) on December 21, 2011. President Bob Hanna also serves as a member of the Governor's Cabinet. The BPU has jurisdiction over the rates and facilities of electric, gas, water and wastewater, telephone and cable television companies and works to ensure that consumers have access to safe, reliable, and efficient services at reasonable costs. In addition, the BPU is working to foster innovation, competition and consumer choice in the energy and telecommunications markets.
Prior to his nomination, Bob served as Director of the Division of Law within the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety. As Director, Bob was responsible for overseeing a division with more than 500 attorneys and for the supervision of Division of Law matters, including advice and litigation on Christie Administration initiatives, including pension and benefit reform, property tax cap and other “toolkit” items; development and defense of legislation, regulations and Executive Orders; State budget, financing, contracting and “pay-to-play” matters; affirmative civil enforcement actions against consumer fraud, securities fraud, government fraud and healthcare fraud; civil rights enforcement; election law matters; environmental enforcement, permitting and counseling; OPRA and OPMA matters; cy pres and CHAPA reviews and enforcement; DYFS child abuse/neglect matters; education and higher education matters; employment and labor law litigation and counseling; State Police, Homeland Security and Corrections Services; representation of the N.J. Board of Public Utilities, New Jersey Transit, Department of Transportation and UMDNJ; construction, condemnation and debt recovery matters; representation of the Department of Labor and Civil Service Commission; representation of the Department of Banking and Insurance; defending Tort Claims Act claims and actions.
Prior to joining the Office of the N.J. Attorney General in January 2010, Bob was a director in the Newark-based law firm of Gibbons P.C., where he began working in May 2006. In private practice, he represented clients in a wide variety of complex white-collar criminal matters, civil matters and attorney-ethics matters. He also has served as a court-appointed receiver.
Previously, Bob joined the Civil Division of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey in May 1990. There he handled a wide array of affirmative and defensive civil matters, including appeals, on behalf of the federal government. His affirmative civil matters included, among others, a successful civil RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) action to rid Local 54 of the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union in Atlantic City of organized crime influence. Bob’s civil matters included defending the U.S. Attorney, federal judges and other federal officials in civil rights actions, litigating significant Freedom of Information Act cases, and opposing the municipality of Secaucus's attempt to halt a major federal rail transportation project.
In 1997, Bob joined the Frauds Division at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, later serving in a variety of roles, including Chief of the Securities - Health Care Fraud Unit and Criminal Health Care Fraud Coordinator. Among his many white-collar criminal cases, Bob was lead prosecutor in suits regarding the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) and major pharmaceutical concern Bristol-Myers Squibb. As a federal prosecutor, Bob also tried complex, lengthy securities and health care fraud criminal cases.
Bob graduated from Manhattan College in 1980 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. After working for a year at a national public accounting firm, he attended Fordham University School of Law School in New York, serving on the Fordham Law Review staff and graduating in 1984 with a Juris Doctorate degree. Following law school, Bob was a litigation associate at the Cahill Gordon & Reindel law firm in New York, working on a broad range of commercial litigation matters. He is admitted to the practice of law in New Jersey and New York. Born in Teaneck and raised in New City, Bob has lived in Madison for 22 years.