« President Obama to Attend Arizona Memorial for Tucson Shooting Victims | Main | Under Pressure, Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction Resigns »

Interior Department Chief of Staff Leaving His Post

Photo Courtesy - DOI dot gov(WASHINGTON) -- Interior Department chief of staff Tom Strickland is leaving his post.

"I came to Washington to take on this job and help (Interior Department Secretary Ken Salazar) in the task of cleaning up this department," Strickland told the Denver Post. "We've had even more excitement and challenge than we bargained for....We always brought our best effort. We always tried to do right by the people."

Salazar told the newspaper, "I asked him not to leave. I begged him. I'll miss his 80-hour weeks. He wants to move forward and do another chapter."

ABC News reported last May that although his agency was charged with coordinating the federal response to the BP oil spill, Strickland traveled to the Grand Canyon with his wife participating in activities that included whitewater rafting three days after the leaks in the Deepwater Horizon pipeline were discovered.

Other leaders of the Interior Department were focused on the Gulf, joined by other agencies and literally thousands of other employees. The chief of staff’s trip raised eyebrows among other Obama administration officials and even within even his own department, sources told ABC News.

Ultimately, after the government realized that the spill was worse than had been previously thought, officials decided that Strickland was needed in the Gulf so Strickland was taken out of the Grand Canyon by a National Park Service helicopter.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>

ABC News Radio