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June 21, 2010

Salazar renames Minerals Management Service

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today swore-in former Justice Department Inspector General Michael Bromwich to lead the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement. What's that, you might ask? It's the new name of the Minerals Management Service. Secretary Salazar signed an order making the name change on Friday.

Perhaps realizing that BOEMRE is not only an unwieldy acronym, but one that would likely be pronounced by most of us as "bummer," the Department of the Interior is calling the newly renamed entity BOE.

Mr. Bromwich will oversee the fundamental restructuring of the former MMS.

“Michael Bromwich has a strong track record of reforming the way organizations work, both in the public and private sectors,” Secretary Salazar said. “He will be a key part of our team as we continue to change the way the Department of the Interior does business, help our nation transition to a clean energy future, and lead the reforms that will raise the bar for offshore oil and gas operations.”

“The BP oil spill has underscored the need for stronger oversight of offshore oil and gas operations, more tools and resources for aggressive enforcement, and a more effective structure for the agency that holds companies accountable,” said Mr. Bromwich. “We will move quickly and responsibly on our reforms.”

Mr. Bromwich is working with Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Wilma Lewis; Assistant Secretary for Policy; Management and Budget Rhea Suh; and Senior Advisor Chris Henderson on the implementation program for restructuring of the agency’s oil and gas management missions.

Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey, wo has been serving as Interim Acting Director of the Minerals Management Service, will return to serving as full-time director of the BLM.

Michael Bromwich served as Inspector General for the Department of Justice from 1994 to 1999 and oversaw numerous high-profile investigations including the misconduct in the FBI laboratory and the FBI’s involvement in the Aldrich Ames case.

He has also served as an assistant U.S. attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York from 1983 to 1987 and as an associate counsel in the Office of the Independent Counsel during Iran-Contra investigation from 1987 to 1989.

As a partner with the law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson since 1999, Bromwich has specialized in conducting internal investigations for private companies and other organizations; providing monitoring and oversight services in connection with public and private litigation and government enforcement actions; and representing institutions and individuals in white-collar criminal and regulatory matters.

As a lawyer in private practice, Bromwich conducted many major internal investigations for companies, both publicly traded and privately held, in the energy, pharmaceuticals, public accounting, and private security industries, among others; reviewed the compliance programs and policies of major companies in a variety of industries, conducted extensive field reviews of such programs and made recommendations for their improvement; and represented companies and individuals in state and federal criminal investigations.

In 2002 the Department of Justice and the District of Columbia selected Bromwich to serve as the Independent Monitor for the District of Columbia’s Metropolitan Police Department, focusing on use of force, civil rights integrity, internal misconduct, and training issues. He served in that position until 2008 when the department was determined to have achieved substantial compliance.

In 2007, Bromwich was selected by the City of Houston to undertake a comprehensive investigation of the Houston Police Department Crime Lab. The investigation identified serious problems in some of the crime lab’s operations, and Bromwich made recommendations for the lab’s improvement.

A 1976 graduate of Harvard, Bromwich received a JD from Harvard Law School and a Masters degree in public policy from the university’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.

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