Secretary Zinke Applauds Nomination of Susan Combs

7/11/2017

Date: July 11, 2017
Contact: Interior_Press@ios.doi.gov

WASHINGTON – Yesterday, President Donald Trump announced the nomination of Texas native Susan Combs to serve as the Department of the Interior’s Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management, and Budget. A rancher from Big Bend, Ms. Combs previously served in two Texas statewide offices as the state’s first female Agriculture Commissioner and then as the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts/Treasurer and chief financial officer.

"I am excited to announce that the President has nominated Susan Combs to be an Assistant Secretary at Interior,” said Secretary Zinke. “Susan is highly qualified and will be a huge asset as we work to make government more efficient and more accountable to the people. Her experience in both elected office and in the private sector, will bring a great perspective to our team here at the Department. I look forward to her speedy confirmation by the Senate.”

“I am deeply honored to be asked to serve in the Trump Administration and to work with Secretary Zinke. The Department of the Interior is an extraordinarily important federal department and I look forward to getting to work,” said Susan Combs.

As Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management, and Budget, Ms. Combs will play an important role in policy development, management reforms to align efforts among the bureaus, and stewardship of Interior's fiscal resources. The Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management, and Budget leads the office and serves as the Department's Chief Financial Officer, Chief Acquisition Officer, and Chief Performance Officer.

“Susan Combs is an outstanding choice for Assistant Secretary for Policy Management and Budget at the Department of the Interior.  As a fourth-generation rancher in the Big Bend, she is also well versed in natural resource management,” said Secretary of Energy Rick Perry. “I have known Susan for over twenty-five years and have always admired her intellect and problem solving skills. She will bring a unique perspective as to how the public and private sector can work together, and she will be an extraordinary asset for Secretary Zinke.”

“Having served at multiple levels of state government, Texans have long benefited from the leadership and tireless work ethic of Susan Combs,” said Senator Cornyn. “As Agriculture Commissioner and then Comptroller of one of the nation’s largest economies, she has a clear record of promoting pro-growth policies and efficiently managing large organizations. Always a fierce advocate for rural Texans, Susan will be a tremendous asset to the Department, and I look forward to supporting her nomination.”

"I applaud the Administration for nominating Susan Combs to serve as Assistant Secretary for Policy, Budget and Management at the Department of Interior. Susan is a committed public servant who understands, like most Texans, that the federal government isn’t the answer to every challenge," said Senator Cruz. "She also understands the power of freedom, and the benefit of collaboration and working with state and local interests. Americans want jobs, and Susan understands that Interior can safeguard our resources while also encouraging beneficial economic growth. Her knowledge and experience both in the public and private sector will be an invaluable asset to this Administration and the Department of Interior."

“Susan Combs has been an exemplary public servant. Her intellect, drive, and focus on details as Comptroller will serve her well in her new role at Interior. She has an intuitive grasp of complexities, both legal and financial, and her ability to achieve consensus in thorny situations has enabled her to achieve successes across a broad range of areas,” said Chairman Lamar Smith. “She is widely respected for her objectivity and fairness. In addition, during her terms as Commissioner of Agriculture and Comptroller of Public Accounts, she immersed herself in natural resource and rural issues. I have known Susan Combs as a personal friend for more than 30 years. I recommend her without reservation and congratulate the Trump administration on her selection.”

Ms. Combs has an extensive career in both elected public office and the private sector. She is a small business owner and operates a ranch in the Big Bend-area of Texas. She previously served in the Texas Legislature, writing and passing the state’s private property legislation, and working to ensure greater transparency in government spending. In her 16 years as a statewide elected official, she provided strategic and innovative management, efficient fiscal and operational oversight, successful implementation of practical public-private partnerships, and delivered efficient and effective services to the public, which earned her numerous awards.