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Release Date: 06/26/2001
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Environmental News



Bonnie Piper 202-5647836 /

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christie Whitman today appointed administrators of three Agency regions: Robert W. Varney, for Region 1, the New England region; Donald Welsh, for Region 3, the mid-Atlantic region; and Thomas Skinner, for Region 5, the Midwest region.
“EPA is fortunate to have the leadership of such experienced environmental professionals. They bring a wealth of knowledge about Agency programs and relationships with the states, which will be critical in developing more progressive approaches to protecting the environment and public health,” said EPA Administrator Christie Whitman.

Varney will be responsible for managing Agency programs in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont. He has been Commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services since July 1989. In the previous 10 years, Varney held other state and local director and planning positions in New Hampshire. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of New Hampshire and a master’s degree in urban planning from Michigan State University.

Welsh returns to the Agency’s Region 3 office where he worked as Chief of Government Affairs from 1991 to 1995 and Executive Assistant to the Regional Administrator from 1985 to 1991. He will manage Agency programs in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. Welsh has been Deputy Secretary for State/Federal Relations of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection since August 1997 and served as special assistant to the Secretary for two years prior to that. In both jobs he was involved in direct relationships with the federal EPA. Welsh is an alumnus of the University of Pennsylvania.

Skinner will manage Agency programs in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. Since January 1999, he has directed the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and served in the cabinet of Governor George Ryan. Prior to that, Skinner was a partner with the Winston and Strawn law firm in Chicago for eight years and a special assistant to Illinois Governor James Thompson for economic affairs and transportation for two years. He is an alumnus of Lawrence University and the Northwestern University School of Law.

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