WASHINGTON, D.C. – Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne today announced that Walter D. Cruickshank will serve as the Acting Director of the Department’s Minerals Management Service, effective June 1, 2007.
Cruickshank has been Deputy Director of MMS since April 8, 2002 and previously served as Associate Director for Policy and Management Improvement for MMS.
Current MMS Director Johnnie Burton will retire from federal service on May 31, 2007, and Cruickshank will serve until a new MMS Director is appointed by the Secretary of the Interior.
"Walter has considerable expertise in mineral economics and two decades of experience with the Minerals Management Service,” Secretary Kempthorne said in announcing the assignment. “He has been responsible for overseeing many policy initiatives through the years and is well respected by his colleagues inside and outside the agency.”
As Deputy Director, Cruickshank served as the chief operating officer and policy advisor to the Director, assisting in the administration of programs that ensure the effective management of energy and mineral resources on the nation’s outer continental shelf and the collection and distribution of revenues for minerals developed on federal and Indian lands. He has supervised strategic planning, the administrative appeals process, management reforms, and was actively involved in the development and implementation of the President’s National Energy Policy within MMS.
Cruickshank received a bachelor of arts in Geological Sciences from Cornell University and a doctorate in Mineral Economics from The Pennsylvania State University. Cruickshank resides in Maryland with his wife and two children.
During Burton’s tenure, the longest in the 25-year history of MMS, she managed 16 lease sales in a full five-year leasing plan and developed the next five-year leasing plan. She was appointed Director of the Minerals Management Service on March 15, 2002.
MMS manages the nation's natural gas, oil and other mineral resources on the outer continental shelf in federal offshore waters. The agency has about 1,700 employees and an annual appropriated budget of about $290 million. The MMS also collects, accounts for and disburses more than $8 billion per year in revenues from federal offshore mineral leases and from onshore mineral leases on federal and Indian lands.