Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller has appointed Jennifer Easler as consumer advocate for regulated utility issues. Easler, whose appointment is subject to confirmation by the Iowa Senate, replaces Mark Schuling, who retired Jan. 10. Schuling had been consumer advocate since January 2011. Easler will oversee a staff of 14 people, made up of attorneys, technical specialists and support personnel. The office investigates all aspects of electric, natural gas, water and telecommunications services regulated by the Iowa Utilities Board. It also represents consumers and the public generally before state and federal courts and agencies. Easler has been an attorney in the Office of Consumer Advocate since 1996 and served as interim director from June 2010 until January 2011.