CHATTANOOGA, TN (Times Free Press) -- The Tennessee Valley Authority has tapped the former head of one of the South's biggest electric utilities to be the federal power provider's next chief executive.

William D. "Bill" Johnson, the former CEO of Progress Energy in North Carolina who was ousted two months ago when Progress merged with Duke Energy, has been chosen to succeed Tom Kilgore, sources said Sunday.

Kilgore, also a former Progress Energy executive who has run TVA for six years, plans to retire at the end of the year.

TVA board members reportedly have chosen Johnson after considering more than 70 candidates.

Read more from our news partners at the Chattanooga Times Free Press.