Photo: Illustration; Source: BSEE

Ex-Navy and Coast Guard serviceman becomes new director of U.S. offshore safety regulator

The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) has revealed that the federal agency charged with improving safety and ensuring environmental protection to the offshore energy industry is getting a new director, whose service record is expected to be an asset in tackling climate change and spearheading the nation’s efforts to switch to clean energy.

The Department of the Interior announced last Friday that Kevin M. Sligh Sr. will join the department as the new director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). Sligh will be in charge of overseeing BSEE’s efforts to promote safety, protect the environment, and conserve offshore resources through vigorous regulatory oversight and enforcement.

Secretary Deb Haaland, explained: “The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement is playing a critical role as the Interior Department moves quickly to tackle the climate crisis, lead the nation into a clean energy economy with good-paying union jobs, and conserve and protect America’s lands, waters and wildlife.”

Kevin M. Sligh; Source: FEMA
Kevin M. Sligh; Source: FEMA

Prior to joining the DOI, Sligh served in a variety of roles at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), including as Individual Assistance Division Director, Senior Advisor on Equity and Deputy Regional Administrator. In addition, Sligh served as Deputy Director for the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Marine Environmental Response Policy, Chief of the Incident Management & Crisis Response Division, and Area Contingency Plan program manager, before joining FEMA.

“Kevin’s exemplary public service career, with years of service at FEMA and as an active-duty and reserve serviceman in the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard working on emergency response and operational readiness, will be invaluable assets for the department and our mission,” added Haaland.

With more than 24 years of both active duty and reserve career experience from his service in the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, Sligh also attended college part-time throughout his enlisted and commissioned military career. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Excelsior College and a Master of Business Administration degree from Northcentral University.

Commenting on the appointment and his new role, Kevin M. Sligh, the new director of BSEE, stated: “I am deeply honoured to join the Interior Department and continue my public service career on behalf of the American people. I’ve dedicated my life to keeping the public safe, and I look forward to continuing that service alongside the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s incredible career employees.”

When it comes to BSEE’s recent activities, it is worth reminding that the U.S. offshore safety and environmental enforcement agency conducted an inspection of Murphy Oil’s King’s Quay platform last month.

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The inspection was carried out to ensure all systems are in place before the platform starts production scheduled for the first half of 2022.