Secretary Jewell Commends President's Intent to Nominate Kristen Sarri as Interior's Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management and Budget

Last edited 09/29/2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today applauded President Obama's intent to nominate Kristen J. Sarri as the Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management and Budget, the top official overseeing financial, administrative and programmatic policy for the Department. If confirmed by the Senate, Sarri would head the office she has led on an interim basis for the past three months as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary.

“Kris is a great asset for the Interior Department,” Secretary Jewell said. “She is a strong leader with the vision and experience to work with Congress and to make progress on key initiatives related to energy, conservation and tribal issues.”

Sarri has led the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management & Budget (PMB) as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary since October 2014, following the departure of Assistant Secretary Rhea Suh. Prior to joining Interior, Sarri was the Associate Director for Legislative Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in the Executive Office of the President.

The PMB Assistant Secretary oversees a broad portfolio of policy and administrative functions that support the Department and its workforce, including budget, law enforcement and security management, human resources, and procurement. The Assistant Secretary also serves as the Department's Chief Financial Officer and Chief Human Capital Officer, and provides policy leadership on international affairs and Secretarial initiatives on land conservation, sustainability, diversity, youth engagement and employment. Interior has an annual budget of about $12 billion and about 70,000 employees.

At OMB, Sarri helped guide the President's budget request through Congress, craft Administration positions on proposed legislation and develop legislative strategies relating to appropriations, budget, and OMB-related issues. She coordinated extensively with White House offices and federal agencies to develop and implement the President's policy, regulatory and budget objectives across the executive branch.

Before that, Sarri served at the Department of Commerce as the Deputy Director of Policy and Strategic Planning (from May 2010) where she was the principal advisor to the Secretary of Commerce on oceans, fisheries, climate, energy, weather and budget issues.

From May 2008, Sarri served on the Senate Commerce Committee as senior staff responsible for the Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries and Coast Guard Subcommittee, supervising staff, setting subcommittee priorities and advising Democratic Committee Members.

Sarri has also served as the senior policy advisor to Senator Jack Reed (from August 2006), staffing the Senator on the Appropriations Committee. She earlier served as Legislative Director for the Northeast-Midwest Senate Coalition (2001 to 2006), developing the legislative agenda for the bipartisan alliance of senators from New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest states. From 1997 to 2001, she was a Community Development Specialist and Presidential Management Fellow at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

A native of Michigan, Sarri received a Bachelor of Arts from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Science in Natural Resources and Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan.

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