Cabinet Profiles: Michael Regan: Administrator Of The EPA

The hearings for President Joe Biden‘s Cabinet nominations continue today.

We will hear testimony from his picks to lead all of his cabinet positions over the next several weeks. We will profile the nominees in advance of their hearings so our readers will have some background information as the proceedings take place.

In addition, most of the hearings will be live-streamed, and we will share that information on our Twitter feed once the hearings go live.


Michael Regan

Administrator Of The Environmental Protection Agency


  • Current Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality where he created an Environmental Justice and Equity Board
  • Former Associate Vice President of the Environmental Defense Fun


If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Regan will become the first Black man to run the country’s most powerful force for protecting public health and the environment.

Along with Brenda Mallory, who is also Black and Biden’s choice to run the White House Council on Environmental Quality, and Congresswoman Deb Haaland, Biden’s nominee for secretary of the interior and a member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe, Regan is part of a proposed environmental team that would be the most diverse in White House history.

Regan began his career as an environmental regulator for the Environmental Protection Agency during the Clinton administration and Bush administration from 1998 to 2008. He then joined the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), where he ultimately became the associate vice president for clean energy and a Southeast regional director. He remained at the EDF for over eight years.

In 2017, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper selected Regan to serve as the secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. During his tenure, he launched the state’s Environmental Justice and Equity Board with a charter to advise the Secretary on how best to advance environmental justice and promote community engagement, particularly across historically underserved and marginalized communities.

He also worked to develop the state’s Clean Energy Plan, which aims to reduce private sector greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and ultimately move towards carbon neutrality by 2050. In addition, Regan oversees the state’s climate change interagency council, which has worked to advance Governor Cooper’s pledge to achieve carbon neutrality by 2020.

Earlier this year, his agency facilitated the biggest coal ash cleanup in the country after reaching a settlement with Duke Energy, which had been dumping the highly toxic waste—a by-product of burning coal—in open, unlined pits near residential neighborhoods.

Under the terms of the settlement, Duke Energy must excavate more than 80 million tons of coal ash from a half dozen facilities and move it to new, lined landfills where it can’t leach into groundwater.

Regan attended North Carolina A&T State University, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in earth and environmental science. He then attended George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where he received a Master of Public Administration.





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