Gino DiCaro

Govís environmental appointments

By Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications

Capitol Update, Jan. 6, 2012 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Governor Jerry Brown made a number of appointments in the final weeks of 2011.  Specifically to the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal-EPA), he appointed attorney Gordon Burns of Davis to the post of undersecretary.  Prior to this appointment, Burns served as a deputy for the U.S. Office of the Solicitor General and deputy attorney general for the California Department of Justice.  In addition, Matthew Maclear of El Cerrito, statewide environmental circuit prosecutor for the California District Attorneys Association, was appointed assistant general counsel for enforcement at Cal-EPA.  Arsenio Mataka of Sacramento was appointed assistant secretary of environmental justice at the Cal-EPA. Mataka has been directing attorney at the California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. since April 2011 after serving as a staff attorney there beginning in 2010.

Mark Nechodom received an appointment as the new Director of the California Department of Conservation.  As you may recall, Governor Brown fired the Department’s former director, Derek Chernow, last year.  Most recently, Nechodom served as senior advisor to the undersecretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and has served as acting director for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of Environmental Markets.  In addition he held several senior level positions at the U.S. Forest Service.  Nechodom’s wife is current Secretary of State Debra Bowen.

Jason Marshall of Sacramento has been appointed chief deputy director at the California Department of Conservation.  Marshall has been the deputy director at CalRecycle since 2010.  He worked at the Department of Conservation in multiple positions from 1991 to 2009, including chief deputy director and legislative director.

Attorney Scott Smithline of Sacramento was appointed Assistant Director for Policy Development at the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle).  Prior to this appointment, Smithline was a consultant for his own environmental consulting firm, the Smithline Group.   In addition, he served as the Director of legal and regulatory affairs with the environmental organization, Californians Against Waste.

All of the appointments were Democrats with the exception of Marshall, who is a “Decline to State”.  The only position requiring Senate confirmation is that of Mark Nechodom as Director of the Department of Conservation.

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