Former Interior Department assistant secretary joins CU-Boulder’s Getches-Wilkinson Center

Published: Oct. 2, 2015

Anne Castle, who served as assistant secretary for water and science in the U.S. Department of the Interior from 2009 to 2014, has joined the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy and the Environment – part of the University of Colorado Boulder law school – as a senior fellow. 

In the position, she will lead projects on water law and policy issues, drawing on her extensive experience engaging with community and governmental leadership to help construct creative and practical solutions to water challenges throughout the West.

“I’m delighted to continue to engage on the most critical natural resource issue of our time – water scarcity – and to work with recognized experts in the field,” said Castle, who is a 1981 alumna of Colorado Law and who has worked on water law since the beginning of her career. “There is no more opportune time to make a meaningful difference in how we as a country confront and resolve our water management challenges.”

While at the Interior Department, Castle oversaw the Bureau of Reclamation, the nation’s largest water wholesaler, and the U.S. Geological Survey. She spearheaded the department’s WaterSMART program and was the driving force behind the 2010 Memorandum of Understanding among the Interior Department, the Department of Energy and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, addressing the development of sustainable hydropower generation. She directed policy for the USGS Landsat Program, the nation’s longest sequential moderate-resolution satellite imaging system.  

Castle also provided hands-on leadership on Colorado River issues and was the Interior Department’s designee to, and chair of, the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Work Group. She was a champion of Minute 319 – an amendment to a decades-old treaty between the United States and Mexico involving the Colorado River. She instituted the federal Open Water Data Initiative and chaired the interagency Federal Geographic Data Committee, the Advisory Committee on Water Information and the Alaska Mapping Executive Committee.

“We are very pleased to welcome Anne back to Colorado Law as a senior fellow with the Getches-Wilkinson Center,” said Britt Banks, executive director of the center. “Her stature in the water community and extensive experience and knowledge will provide an elevated level of engagement on water issues and will be a tremendous resource for our faculty, contributors and students as well as a significant benefit to the water research projects we work on.”

At the center, Castle will lead a project funded by the Walton Family Foundation and the Gates Family Foundation to explore and develop implementation actions on Colorado’s Water Plan.

Prior to joining the Interior Department, Castle practiced water law with the Rocky Mountain regional law firm of Holland & Hart, where she was elected to chair the firm’s management committee. She received her undergraduate degree from CU-Boulder’s College of Engineering and Applied Sciences in applied mathematics in 1973.

After leaving the Interior Department, Castle hiked the 800-kilometer Camino de Santiago in Spain and spent the 2015 spring quarter at the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University as the Landreth Visiting Fellow.

Contact:
Britt Banks, 303-492-2188
britt.banks@colorado.edu
Keri Ungemah, Colorado Law, 720-984-0457
keri.ungemah@colorado.edu
Elizabeth Lock, CU-Boulder media relations, 303-492-3117
elizabeth.lock@colorado.edu

Anne Castle.