Biden Names Acting Federal Agency Leaders

Official portrait of Vice President Joe Biden in his West Wing Office at the White House, Jan. 10, 2013. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann) This official White House photograph is being made available only for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photograph. The photograph may not be manipulated in any way and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products, promotions that in any way suggests approval or endorsement of the President, the First Family, or the White House.

President Joe Biden designated acting leaders to federal agencies to oversee the government until his political appointments are confirmed upon taking office. Biden assigned Kevin Shea as the acting Agriculture Secretary.

Shea will assume the duties until the Senate confirms Biden’s pick, Tom Vilsack, for the top post at USDA. Shea has been administrator of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service since 2013. Vilsack is well-known to agriculture, serving as the Obama administration’s Agriculture Secretary.

Biden also appointed Jane Nishida as acting administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. She is the Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator in the EPA Office of International and Tribal Affairs. She will assume the duties until Michael Regan, Biden’s pick to head the EPA, can be confirmed.

Regan spent more than nine years working for the EPA under the Clinton and Bush administrations, and eight years at the Environmental Defense Fund. Regen has spent the last four years leading the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality.