FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff announced that Susan J. Court, director of the Office of Enforcement (OE), is retiring after 27 years of service in the federal government. Her successor will be Norman Bay, a former U.S. Attorney for New Mexico and current associate professor of law at the University of New Mexico. He is expected to join the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on July 6.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar Thursday named Sylvia V. Baca, a senior public and private sector manager in energy and environmental policy and programs, as deputy assistant secretary for land and minerals management. Baca currently is employed by Houston-based BP America Inc., where she has held several positions with the company since 2001.

Hilary Tompkins was confirmed by the Senate as solicitor of the Department of Interior. She served as an adjunct professor at the University of Mexico School of Law prior to coming to Interior and was chief counsel to New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson between 2003 and 2008.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has tapped Tom Tidwell as the new chief of the U.S. Forest Service. He has been with the agency in a variety of positions for 32 years.

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