|New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced five key appointments to leadership positions at the agency.
"These dedicated and talented professionals bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team that will bolster our ability to meet DEC's mission at a critical moment for environmental protection in New York State and the nation," Commissioner Seggos said. "With Governor Kathy Hochul's leadership and a strong team at DEC, we will work together to safeguard New York's environment from challenges both new and known and further advance our efforts to mitigate climate change."
Sean Mahar has been named DEC's Executive Deputy Commissioner. DEC's Chief of Staff since 2018, Mahar previously served as the agency's Assistant Commissioner of Public Affairs and Communications where he oversaw the agency's external and internal communications strategies. Prior to joining DEC, Mahar spent more than a decade with Audubon New York, advancing federal and state policy initiatives serving as the Director of Government Relations and Communications for the organization.
Dereth Glance has been named Deputy Commissioner for Environmental Remediation and Materials Management where she will oversee DEC's Divisions of Environmental Remediation, Materials Management, and Mineral Resources. Prior to joining DEC, Glance served as Executive Director of the Onondaga County Resource Recovery Agency and was appointed by President Obama as U.S. Commissioner at the International Joint Commission. Glance also worked as the Executive Program Director for Citizens Campaign for the Environment, as well as on the New York State's Great Lakes Basin Advisory Council, Clean Water Network, and Onondaga Lake Partnership Outreach Committee. Glance was also appointed to serve on the Waste Emission Advisory Panel that provided recommendations to New York's Climate Action Council.
Adriana Espinoza will join DEC as the agency's first Deputy Commissioner for Equity and Justice. As Deputy Commissioner, Espinoza will oversee DEC's Office of Environmental Justice and lead internal efforts to encourage diversity, equity, and inclusion among incoming and current staff and enhance DEC's outreach to disadvantaged communities across the state. Prior to joining DEC, Espinoza served as Senior Advisor for Environmental Justice for the New York City Mayor's Office of Climate & Sustainability, where she directed the development and implementation of the City's Environmental Justice for All Program. Espinoza also served as New York City Program Director for the New York League of Conservation Voters from 2017-2019.
Cathy Haas has been named Acting Regional Director for DEC's Region 1, which encompasses Long Island. Haas has served DEC's Region 1 office for nearly three decades and started her career in the Division of Spills Management before serving nearly 25 years with the Division of Water. Most recently, Haas served as the Regional Engineer for Water, Remediation and Mined Land.
Robert Calarco has been named Assistant Regional Director for Region 1. Calarco previously served in Suffolk County government for two decades. Most recently as a Suffolk County Legislator, Calarco rose to the rank of Majority Leader and Deputy Presiding Officer of the County Legislature where he championed environmental issues including water quality, wastewater infrastructure, invasive species, and regional watershed improvement initiatives.