David G. Huizenga - Acting Assistant Secretary, Office of Environmental Management
President Obama designated David G. Huizenga as the Acting Assistant Secretary for the Office of Environmental Management, effective July 20, 2011.
A nationally and internationally recognized expert in nonproliferation and nuclear waste management issues, Mr. Huizenga has over 25 years of leadership, management, and technical experience in a wide variety of programs across the Department of Energy. He began his career researching and solving some of the Environmental Management program’s greatest challenges as a Pacific Northwest National Laboratory research engineer at the Hanford site in 1985. In that capacity, Mr. Huizenga worked on long-term solutions to aging single-shell tanks that were leaking radioactive waste in the soil and other activities to protect the Columbia River and developed computer-modeling tools to evaluate the long-term performance of low-level radioactive waste forms.
Mr. Huizenga played a successful leadership role for over a decade in the Office of Environmental Management, where he began as a technical advisor on waste management policy and ultimately served as a Deputy Assistant Secretary. He was instrumental in establishing complex-wide waste management and nuclear materials disposition strategies that were used to accelerate closure of the Rocky Flats Plant and the removal of special nuclear materials from Hanford and other sites. He worked closely with the Carlsbad Site Office to open the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the world’s first deep geologic repository.
In 2002, Mr. Huizenga transferred to the National Nuclear Security Administration, where he has managed several key national security programs aimed at reducing the worldwide threat of nuclear terrorism by working cooperatively with over 100 countries to secure nuclear weapons and weapons-usable nuclear materials and enhance the detection of illicit trafficking of nuclear and other radioactive materials. From February 2002 to November 2002, Mr. Huizenga served as the Deputy Director of the Office of International Nuclear Safety and Cooperation. He then went on to serve as the Assistant Deputy Administrator for the Office of International Material Protection and Cooperation. Mr. Huizenga became the Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for the $2.5 billion Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation in January 2011.
Mr. Huizenga is well known and respected for being a consensus builder and team player both within the U.S government and in the international community. In recognition of his international credentials, Mr. Huizenga served four years as the U.S. Senior Technical Advisor on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Radioactive Waste Advisory Committee. Working with the Department of State, he led the technical negotiations for the 1997 IAEA Radioactive Waste and Spent Fuel Convention. He has testified numerous times before Congress on matters of international and national security.
Mr. Huizenga has a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and a Masters in Chemical Engineering from Montana State University. He graduated as Outstanding Senior Chemist, Sigma Xi, 1980, and Outstanding Analytical Chemist, American Chemical Society, 1980. He has received Meritorious Presidential Rank Awards in 2000 and 2008 and the Secretary of Energy Gold Award in 1998.
Mr. Huizenga lives in Arlington, Virginia with his wife and two children.