Assistant Administrator for Water Fox to depart EPA

Fox

After serving three years at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Assistant Administrator for the Office of Water Radhika Fox announced she will depart the agency at the end of February 2024.

Appointed by President Joe Biden and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 2021, Fox spearheaded EPA’s water agenda in recent years. The agency credited her with leading efforts to “protect American communities from water pollution while embedding equity and environmental justice across its Office of Water programs.” The exact reason for Fox’s departure is unclear and the agency has not made any announcement on interim leadership.

A press release from EPA described Fox as the “driving force” behind the implementation of the water pillar of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law — which includes $50 billion in funding for water projects — the single largest federal investment in the water sector. Under Fox’s leadership, EPA has provided more than $13 billion to states, territories, Tribes, and local communities, supporting more than 2,600 water infrastructure projects. The full suite of water funding and financing programs have been a powerhouse delivering for the American people — more than $45 billion in water funding has been deployed during her tenure, the agency said.

“It has been the greatest honor of my career to lead the Office of Water under the incredible leadership of Administrator Regan and with a talented team of career leaders here in Washington and across our 10 EPA regions,” said Fox. “I am proud of the work we’ve accomplished to ensure that every American can rely on clean and safe water, which provides a foundation for healthy communities and thriving economies. The partnerships we’ve established, the science-based regulations we’ve issued, and the federal funding we’ve invested will benefit generations to come.”

Fox has also led EPA’s efforts to implement billions of dollars to tackle water pollution from lead and PFAS, while advancing regulations to ensure every American has access to clean and safe water and can enjoy America’s natural resources.

“Radhika’s impact on protecting clean water for all will be felt across this country for decades to come,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Radhika’s vision, strategy, and tenacity to deliver on President Biden’s ambitious agenda has been nothing short of transformational.”

The agency also noted Fox is the first woman of color and the first person of Asian American descent to lead EPA’s Office of Water. Prior to her time at EPA, Fox served as CEO of the nonprofit US Water Alliance since 2015. Prior to that position, she directed policy and government affairs for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.

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