Senate confirms USGS director

Former astronaut James Reilly was confirmed as the director of USGS last week. ©NASA

The Senate has confirmed James Reilly as the director of the U.S. Geological Survey.

Nominated by President Trump in late January, Reilly holds a PhD in geosciences from the University of Texas-Dallas, where his studies focused on petroleum geology.

He worked in the exploration division of Santa Fe Minerals before being selected for NASA’s astronaut academy. Reilly then spent 13 years with NASA and participated in three space shuttle missions.

“I am fully committed to scientific integrity,” Reilly said at a hearing in early March. “Science drives good policy, and good science has to be there for good policy to be made.”

Reilly replaces Acting Director William Werkheiser, who served in this position since 2017.

Read more on this confirmation from Earth & Space Science News. 

The Wildlife Society is a member of the USGS Coalition, an alliance of over 80 organizations that supports increased federal investment in survey programs that underpin responsible natural resource stewardship, improve resilience to natural and human-induced hazards and contribute to the long-term health, security and prosperity of the nation.  

Read The Wildlife Society’s standing position on The Use of Science in Policy and Management Decisions