Obama chooses Interior Dept. head

Posted: Feb 6, 2013

Written by

JOHN M. BRODER, New York Times
Sally Jewell

President Obama has selected Sally Jewell, the chief executive of Recreational Equipment Inc., to lead the Interior Department, White House officials said Wednesday.

If confirmed, Ms. Jewell, a former oil company official and longtime advocate for conservation and outdoor recreation, will take over a department that has been embroiled in controversy over regulation of oil and gas on public lands and waters in the Gulf of Mexico and in the Arctic Ocean. She also will assume responsibility for the stewardship of hundreds of millions of acres of public lands, from the Everglades of Florida to the Cascades of Washington State.

Ms. Jewell, who also worked as a banker, took over REI in 2005, when the company was one of the most successful outdoor outfitters in the country. The company has grown rapidly under her tenure and now boasts roughly $2 billion a year in sales.

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