"Our commitment, led by the President and the Vice-President, has been to bring us back to community. To working in partnership. We can use the environment as a tool to bring us together and encourage us to look beyond our singular, special interests to find the common interest."
Kathleen A. McGinty
Swearing in ceremony
January 25, 1996
Recent Speeches/Testimony by Kathleen McGinty
Kathleen A. McGinty was appointed Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) by President Clinton on January 5, 1995. In this capacity, Ms. McGinty serves as President Clinton's senior advisor on environment, natural resources and sustainable development issues.
As Chair of CEQ, Ms. McGinty is responsible for administering the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, which includes coordinating federal environmental efforts and overseeing environmental reviews of major federal actions.
At President Clinton's request, Ms. McGinty led the development of a series of reforms to the Superfund program to improve its efficiency and effectiveness; a forest plan for the Pacific Northwest that puts people back to work as it protects ancient forests; a program to restore the Florida Everglades; an agreement for the California Bay and Delta to protect both the health of the environment and the stability of the state's water supply; programs to promote environmental technologies; a number of executive orders to enhance the environmental performance of the federal agencies by promoting recycling and reduced toxics use; and Presidential Proclamations to protect public health and our natural heritage such as the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah.
CEQ has led the Administration's effort to reinvent environment and natural resource programs. In this effort, the Administration is cutting paperwork, saving taxpayers money and developing new partnerships with industry, landowners and the states to provide more flexibility for the regulated community in return for better environmental results.
Prior to her appointment as Chair of CEQ, Ms. McGinty was appointed by President Clinton on January 16, 1993 to be Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Office on Environmental Policy. In that capacity, she served as the President's environmental policy advisor until the Office on Environmental Policy was merged with CEQ and Ms. McGinty was named CEQ Chair in January 1995.
Before her service in the Clinton Administration, Ms. McGinty served as then-Senator Albert Gore's senior Legislative Assistant for Energy and Environmental Policy. In this capacity, Ms. McGinty also served as Congressional Staff Coordinator for the Senate delegation to the United Nations' Conference on Environment and Development held in June, 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, as well as an Official Member of the U.S. Delegations to Negotiations on the Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Antarctic Protocol.
Ms. McGinty's academic background is in science and technology. While studying Chemistry at Saint Joseph's University, Ms. McGinty worked as a laboratory assistant for the Atlantic Richfield Chemical Company. Her research focused primarily on the development of products designed to suppress coal dust and on wastewater treatment systems.
After graduating summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science from Saint Joseph's in 1985, Ms. McGinty studied law at Columbia University. Concentrating her activities in the law school's new Science, Law, and Technology program, Ms. McGinty developed a strong interest in Patent law. Ms. McGinty complemented her studies by working with the law firm of Cooper, Dunham and Moran, a New York firm specializing in patent, trademark, and copyright matters.
Upon completing her legal studies in 1988, Ms. McGinty served as a Law Clerk to the Honorable H. Robert Mayer, Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C.
Ms. McGinty began her service in the United States Senate after being awarded the Congressional Fellowship of the American Chemical Society. As a Fellow, Ms. McGinty worked in Senator Gore's office on science education issues; legislation designed to enhance opportunities for cooperative industrial research; and initiatives to strengthen patent protections for process inventions.