CCEE’s Dr. Christopher Frey confirmed by Senate for new EPA role

CCEE’s Dr. Christopher Frey was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as assistant administrator for the Office and Research and Development (ORD) at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

“Science is a top priority at EPA, which is why I am so proud to have Dr. Christopher Frey — a widely-respected and trusted scientist — lead our science and research efforts,” tweeted EPA Administrator Michael Regan. 

Frey said he is proud to serve in the new role.

“Science and the environment have long been my passions and my purpose,” Frey tweeted. “I am a champion of science and its essential role in informing decisions to protect human health and the environment. I am inspired every day by my ORD at EPA colleagues.”

Frey, who currently serves as deputy assistant administrator for Science Policy in the Office of Research and Development as an appointee of the Biden/Harris administration, previously was a Glenn E. and Phyllis J. Futrell Distinguished University Professor at CCEE, where he has served on the faculty since 1994. He has taken a leave of absence from NC State during his tenure at EPA. Frey focuses on scientific integrity and the role of science to inform decision-making related to climate change, environmental justice, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and lead. 

Frey was an AAAS/EPA Environmental Science and Engineering Fellow in 1992 and served as an exposure modeling adviser in ORD’s National Exposure Research Laboratory from 2006-07. He was a member of the EPA FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel from 2004-06, a member of the EPA Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) from 2008-12, chair of CASAC from 2012-15), and a member of the EPA Science Advisory Board from 2012-18. The University of Virginia mechanical engineering graduate, who has a Master of Engineering in mechanical engineering and Ph.D. in engineering and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University, has received several awards for his efforts, including the Alcoa Foundation Distinguished Engineering Research Award in 2020, the Frank A. Chambers Excellence in Air Pollution Control Award from the Air & Waste Management Association in 2019, the Excellence in Review Award from Environmental Science & Technology in 2017, and Lyman A. Ripperton Environmental Educator Award from the Air & Waste Management Association in 2012.

“It is very gratifying to see that Dr. Frey is in a Senate-confirmed position,” said CCEE Head Dr. Morton Barlaz. “He has provided much leadership in his areas of expertise over his career, and I am very pleased that he has been given the opportunity to apply his knowledge to serve the country.”