In an internal Oct. 25 memo, Steve Owens, assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety & Pollution Prevention which is responsible for pesticide regulations, announced that he would be resigning his position effective on Nov. 30. Owens stated that the reason for his departure is to spend more time with his family in Arizona.
Owens was nominated by President Obama in April 2009 and unanimously confirmed by the Senate in July 2009. Previously, he served as the director of the Arizona Dept. of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) and was the longest-serving director in ADEQ history. Before joining ADEQ, he was a practicing environmental attorney in Phoenix for 14 years. The administration has issued no statement regarding Owens’ replacement.