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Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland on Monday replaced exiting Chief of Staff Larry Roberts with longtime government employee Rachael S. Taylor, effective November 15.

Taylor previously served as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary at the Interior for Policy, Management, and Budget. Her predecessor, Roberts (Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin), is leaving the department for a tribal attorney general position, according to a statement from the Interior.

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The Office of Policy, Management and Budget (PMB) is responsible for management and operational issues within the Department.

"Since day one of the Biden-Harris administration, Rachael’s expertise has been instrumental in advancing the Department’s goals while maintaining an exceptional level of interagency coordination,” Secretary Haaland said in a statement. “I am confident in Rachael’s leadership and excited to work with her as we continue to conserve our public lands and waters, honor our relationships with Tribes, and secure a clean energy future.”

Taylor is from West Virginia Native and previously worked on the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations for almost 16 years.

During that time, she served as the Democratic clerk for the Subcommittee on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies. Her responsibilities included budget oversight for several agencies, including the Department of the Interior, Indian Health Service, and Smithsonian Institution.

She has a B.A. from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a Master in Public Administration from American University.

"I am thrilled to continue serving the American people in this new role,” Taylor said. “Under Secretary Haaland’s historic leadership, the Department will continue to lead in this Administration’s all-of-government approach to tackling the climate crisis and strengthening the Nation-to-Nation relationship with Indian Tribes.”

Taylor will serve as Haaland’s third Chief of Staff. Roberts took over for Jennifer Van der Heide as Chief of Staff in April. Prior to that, he served as the Acting Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs during the Obama administration, according to an old press release from the time.

On Tuesday, the Interior spokesperson Tyler Cherry told Native News Online there was no news on who will succeed Taylor in her former position.

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About The Author
Jenna Kunze
Author: Jenna KunzeEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Staff Writer
Jenna Kunze is a reporter for Native News Online and Tribal Business News. Her bylines have appeared in The Arctic Sounder, High Country News, Indian Country Today, Smithsonian Magazine and Anchorage Daily News. In 2020, she was one of 16 U.S. journalists selected by the Pulitzer Center to report on the effects of climate change in the Alaskan Arctic region. Prior to that, she served as lead reporter at the Chilkat Valley News in Haines, Alaska. Kunze is based in New York.