EPA Officials from Obama Administration on Biden Transition Team

Key Biden EPA Transition Team Members

EPA Officials from Obama Administration on Biden Transition Team

November 16, 2020

Greenwire and Reuters have reported that several high-profile U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials who served in the Obama Administration are coming back together as members of President-elect Joe Biden's EPA transition team. Some are former officials who helped craft agency regulations that the Trump administration has since rolled back.

Key former Obama officials who are members of the Biden transition team include:

  • Cynthia Giles
    She led EPA's enforcement office during the Obama administration. She brought enforcement actions against the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the Volkswagen emission-cheating scandal that resulted in billions of dollars in fines and settlements. In an E&E interview, Giles called nabbing VW the "best moment" during her time at EPA (Greenwire, Jan. 20, 2017).
  • Joseph Goffman
    He was a top aide on climate and air policy at EPA. Goffman helped craft the Clean Power Plan, the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, and the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. He has criticized the Trump administration on twitter for rollbacks of environmental rules.
  • Ken Kopocis
    He led EPA's water office during the Obama administration and helped write the Waters of the United states rule which has since been replaced by the Trump administration.
  • Lisa Garcia
    She was a former environmental justice adviser at EPA during the Obama years who helped draft plans to integrate environmental justice in programs and policies across the agency.

Patrice Simms, Earthjustice VP for healthy communities leads the Biden EPA team. Simms was a deputy assistant attorney general for the Department of Justice's Environment and Natural Resources Division and has EPA experience with the agency's Office of General Counsel.