David Bernhardt Confirmed as Deputy Secretary of the Interior by U.S. Senate

David Bernhardt Confirmed as Deputy Secretary of the Interior by U.S. Senate

Deputy Secretary DAvid Bernhardt

The U.S. Senate voted 53-43 on July 24 to confirm David Bernhardt as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The Deputy Secretary serves as the Department’s Chief Operating Officer. Bernhardt has previously held several senior positions at Interior, including Solicitor, the Department’s third-ranking position, following unanimous Senate confirmation in 2006.

Mr. Bernhardt grew up with an appreciation of the outdoors in Colorado that has shaped his priorities and outlook ever since. He has significant experience working with the outdoor recreation community in his previous roles. Many outdoor organizations, including the Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable (ORIR), supported Bernhardt’s nomination. ORIR praised Bernhardt’s experience in a May letter of support to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, saying, “The Department needs leadership from those aware of the complexities of balancing recreation, conservation and commodity purposes – and a person who understands that there are usually solutions to even very difficult matters if time is invested in understanding the full range of alternatives and then gaining broad buy-in by the range of interests involved in Interior topics.”

He is only the second Trump Interior nominee to be confirmed. Several more have been announced and are undergoing Senate hearings, but more than a dozen key posts at Interior have no announced candidates.