TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy says he's naming a recently retired Democratic state senator to the board that oversees the state's utilities.

Murphy, a Democrat, said in a statement Thursday that he is nominating Bob Gordon to serve as a commissioner on the Board of Public Utilities.

Gordon retired from his state Senate on Wednesday after serving in the Legislature since 2004, first in the Assembly.

Gordon says the position gives him a chance to return his "roots" because environment and energy policy first drew him into public service.

The nomination comes after Richard Mroz announced earlier he was leaving the board. Mroz served as the board's president under Republican Gov. Chris Christie.

If confirmed by the Democrat-led Senate, Gordon would get a roughly $125,300 salary. Lawmakers earn $49,000 annually.