Gov. Gavin Newsom has appointed Julie Henderson as director of the Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR), a role she has been covering as acting director since July.
Henderson pledged to “accelerate the transition to safer, more sustainable pest management,” carrying the torch of the previous director, Val Dolcini. She previously served as deputy secretary of public policy at CalEPA, where she was instrumental in enacting the agency’s ban on the insecticide chlorpyrifos. She has also served as an advisor to former Gov. Jerry Brown and on his executive staff when he was attorney general.
Dolcini left DPR abruptly in July to advocate for the pesticide manufacturing industry as Syngenta’s head of business sustainability and government affairs in Washington, D.C. He took over the position from Teresa Marks, who served a short tenure as acting director following the retirement of Brian Leahy. DPR's chief deputy director had also left a few weeks before Dolcini.
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Newsom has also appointed a new CalEPA deputy secretary for environmental justice, tribal affairs and border relations.
A member of the Navajo Nation, Bidtah Becker has worked on water issues with the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority as well as the Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources. She has also led clean drinking water efforts in the Colorado River Basin.