Eight environmental groups sent Perdue a letter on Dec. 2 asking for a meeting at which they would suggest DENR secretary candidates. Representatives from those groups met with members of Perdue's transition team last week and suggested: former DENR Secretary Bill Holman, currently teaching at Duke; Reid Wilson, executive director of the Conservation Trust for North Carolina and former chief of staff at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Nina Szlosberg, a board of transportation member and former chair of the Conservation Council of North Carolina's political action committee.
Business groups, though, are unlikely to greet any of those names warmly, and with Perdue understandably focused on job creation, she'll feel pressure from both sides.
Another name in the mix that the corporate side might be more comfortable with is Freda Porter, president of Porter Scientific Inc., in Pembroke, which consults with governments and corporations on a range of environmental issues, including compliance with regulations. She is a Duke-trained PhD in mathematical and computational sciences and did post-doctoral work at UNC Chapel Hill in groundwater contamination. She also is a Lumbee Indian.