US President Barack Obama announced Wednesday the selection of Sally Jewell, a recognized environmentalist and chief executive of an outdoor apparel and equipment company, to be interior secretary, DPA reported.
Obama called Jewell a "strong and capable leader" who is an "expert on the energy and climate issues that are going to shape our future." She knows "that there's no contradiction between being good stewards of the land and our economic progress."
Jewell worked in commercial banking before taking on the top position at REI eight years ago. She started her career as an oil industry engineer. If approved by the Senate, she will succeed Ken Salazar, who resigned to spend more time with his family. She also would become one of only a few woman in Obama's second-term cabinet.
The interior secretary oversees the conservation of the nation's public lands, including its national parks such as the Grand Canyon. Jewell has long been an advocate for conservation and outdoor recreation.
REI is one of America's most environmentally conscious companies, according to Obama, who noted that it uses renewable energy as a power source in many of its stores.