WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, ranking member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee which oversees the U.S. Forest Service, responded to Wednesday’s announcement that Forest Service Chief Abigail Kimbell was retiring immediately, to be replaced by Regional Forester Tom Tidwell.
Murkowski, who became acquainted with Kimbell when Kimbell was the forest supervisor of the Stikine area of the Tongass National Forest in Petersburg, Alaska, thanked Kimbell for her years of distinguished service.
“She was the first woman to be tapped to lead the Forest Service and she did a remarkable job given the often dysfunctional nature of the agency,” Murkowski said. “While some would suggest Kimbell does not represent the desires of the new administration and should retire, I have always found her decisions and leadership to be both measured and in the best interest of the land she was asked to conserve.”
Murkowski congratulated Tom Tidwell on being named the new chief of the Forest Service.
“I look forward to working with the new chief to address many of the issues facing the agency,” Murkowski said. “I congratulate Tom on his new post and welcome his family back to Washington. I’m sure he will be as effective in his leadership of the Forest Service as his predecessors were.”