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Who are the “Green” Women Movers and Shakers?


The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) leads the nation’s environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts. The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency is to protect human health and the environment. Since 1970, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people.

The EPA is led by its Administrator, who is appointed by the President of the United States. The EPA is not a Cabinet agency, but the Administrator is normally given cabinet rank. The agency has approximately 18,000 full-time employees.

Lisa P. Jackson is the current Administrator. She was recently appointed by President Obama. She is the first African-American to hold this post. She worked for the EPA for 16 years before moving to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. She was the New Jersey Commissioner of Environmental Protection for two and a half years and most recently, the Chief of Staff to the Governor of New Jersey.

The environmental magazine Grist interviewed several New Jersey environmental activists and reported that opinion about Jackson was divided: “The split seems to be between those who work on energy and climate policy in the state’s capital [who were supportive of Jackson] and those who work on toxic cleanups at the local level [who were critical of her].”

In another development, an ex-EPA Administrator, Carol Browner, was appointed to a newly created position officially titled “Energy Coordinator”. While the role has not yet been clearly defined, her role seems to be that of an overseer, promoting smooth cooperation among the different energy and climate entities. Carol was the longest serving EPA Administrator from 1993 to 2001. She brings to the job a strong résumé in environmental protection, law and management consulting.

Another recent appointee is Nancy Sutley as chair of the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality. The Council on Environmental Quality coordinates federal environmental efforts and works closely with agencies and other White House offices in the development of environmental policies and initiatives. She was, most recently, the Deputy Mayor for Energy and Environment for the city of Los Angeles, California. She has also worked in the EPA and has served as special assistant to the EPA administrator in the Clinton administration.

All three women are strong defenders of the environment with solid backgrounds in the EPA. The new Obama government seems to be making a big priority of being green and is heading in the right direction. Here’s to a greener future!


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