First Solar Secures Syndicated Development Loan Facility from Mizuho Bank for Utility-Scale Solar Projects in Japan
José H. Villarreal
Jose H. Villarreal was elected a director of First Solar in September 2007. Mr. Villarreal is a partner with the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, and practices primarily in the domestic policy area. Prior to joining Akin Gump, Mr. Villarreal served as an assistant attorney general in the Public Finance Division of the Texas Attorney General's office. He was recently elected chairman of the board of directors of the New America Alliance and currently serves on the board of directors of The PMI Group, Inc. From 1998 to 2006, he served on the board of directors of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., where he chaired the Compensation, Nominating and Governance Committee and served as lead independent director. From October 1993 to May 1999, he served as a presidential appointee to the board of directors of Fannie Mae. He has served as chairman of the board of the National Council of La Raza, and as vice chairman of the board of the U.S. Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute.
Michael Sweeney was elected a director of First Solar in July 2003. Mr. Sweeney joined Goldner Hawn Johnson & Morrison (GHJM) as a Managing Director in 2000 and was elected Managing Partner in November 2001. He had previously served as President of Starbucks Coffee Company (UK) Ltd. in London and held various operating management and corporate finance roles. After starting his career with Merrill Lynch in New York and Phoenix, he built and sold an investment banking boutique. Subsequently, Mr. Sweeney developed and sold franchise companies in the Blockbuster and Papa John's systems. Mr. Sweeney serves on the boards of GHJM portfolio companies, Allen-Edmonds Shoe Corporation, Transport Corporation of America, Inc. and Vitality Foodservice, Inc. Mr. Sweeney graduated from Swarthmore College.