Department of the Interior

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Office of the Secretary
June 9, 2006

Contact: Shane Wolfe
Secretary Kempthorne Praises President's Intention to Nominate Drue Pearce as Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline Project

WASHINGTON -- Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne today praised President Bush’s intention to nominate Drue Pearce as the Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects. The announcement is subject to confirmation by the U.S. Senate, once the official nomination is made by the President.

Since 2001, Pearce has served as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of the Interior for Alaska Affairs.

“By all accounts, Drue has been a tremendous asset to the Interior Department for the past five years,” Kempthorne said. “The Department will miss her intimate knowledge of Alaska and its issues. However, she is an excellent choice to coordinate the planning and construction of a much-needed natural gas pipeline from Alaska to the Lower 48.”

The Fiscal Year 2005 Military Construction Appropriations Bill established the position of Federal Coordinator to coordinate activities by federal agencies with respect to an Alaska natural gas pipeline project. The Office of the Federal Coordinator is an independent office within the executive branch. The Federal Coordinator reports directly to the President.

Before joining the Department of the Interior, Pearce was a member of the Alaska Legislature for 17 years. She was a member of the State Senate leadership for nine years, serving as the Senate President during the 19th and 21st Alaska Legislatures. In addition, Pearce was State Senate Finance Committee Co-chairman for four years. She also served on the Resources Committee throughout her career.

Pearce earned a B.A. in biological sciences from Indiana University and an M.P.A. from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. In addition, she is a graduate of The Executive Program at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

Pearce, her husband Michael and their daughter Tate split their time between their homes in Anchorage and southern Maryland.