Douglas Domenech

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Douglas Domenech
Douglas W. Domenech official photo.jpg
United States Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Insular Areas
Assumed office
September 18, 2017[1]
President Donald Trump
Preceded by Esther Kia'aina
8th Virginia Secretary of Natural Resources
In office
January 16, 2010 – January 11, 2014
Governor Bob McDonnell
Preceded by Preston Bryant
Succeeded by Molly Joseph Ward
Personal details
Douglas William Domenech

(1955-08-05) August 5, 1955 (age 64)
Georgia, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Jeanne Marie Schram
Children Ben Domenech
Education Virginia Tech (BS)

Douglas William Domenech is an American government official and the current Assistant United States Secretary of the Interior for Insular Areas.[1] He is the former Deputy Chief of Staff of the United States Department of the Interior, Senior Advisor to the Secretary of the Interior, and a George W. Bush administration appointee to the White House Working Group on the Political Status of Puerto Rico.

Early life and education

Born August 5, 1955, in Georgia, Douglas W. Domenech grew up in a military family of Puerto Rican descent and lived in Panama, the Dominican Republic, and the family's native island of Puerto Rico as a child. His father, John Domenech, served in the Army for 30 years and retired as a colonel. Domenech graduated from Antilles High School in Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico, in 1973 and earned a B.S. in forestry and wildlife management at Virginia Tech in 1978. He is the father of blogger and columnist Ben Domenech, who is married to Meghan McCain, a daughter of the late Senator John McCain.


Doug Domenech served in the George W. Bush administration in the Department of the Interior as White House Liaison and as Deputy Chief of Staff.[2]

From 2010 to 2014, Domenech served as Governor Bob McDonnell's Secretary of Natural Resources of the Commonwealth of Virginia,[3] making him the first Hispanic and Puerto Rican person to be appointed to McDonnell's cabinet. Domenech previously worked for the Forest Resources Association.[4]

From March 2015, Domenech was director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation's Fueling Freedom Project, which was a project to fight the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan.[2]

Domenech is the Interior Secretary's representative on the Advisory Committee of the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico.[5]


On April 23, 2019, The Washington Post reported that Domenech was one of six officials being investigated for ethics violations by the Interior Department's Office of Inspector General.[6] In 2017 Trump signed an executive order requiring appointees to recuse themselves for two years on any matters involving their former employers and clients.[7] According to his calendar, on April 6, 2017, Domenech had two meetings with his former employer, the Texas Public Policy Foundation,[8] while the think tank was also a party to lawsuits against the Interior Department.[9] Six months later, one of the lawsuits was settled by the government and the Texas Public Policy Foundation framed it as a "major win".[10]


  1. ^ a b "Assistant Secretary for Insular Areas". U.S. Department of the Interior. Retrieved January 2, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Doug Domenech joins TPPF as Director of Fueling Freedom Project". Retrieved June 25, 2018.
  3. ^ Whitley, Tyler (7 January 2010). "McDonnell announces three more Cabinet choices". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved April 21, 2017.
  4. ^ "Doug Domenech". Ballotpedia. Retrieved September 27, 2017.
  5. ^ "Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico » Blog Archive » Governance". Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  6. ^ Eilperin, Juliet; Grandoni, Dino (April 23, 2019). "Six Trump Interior appointees are being investigated for possible ethical misconduct". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  7. ^ "Executive Order: Ethics Commitments by Executive Branch Appointees". The White House. Retrieved May 7, 2019.
  8. ^ "Douglas Domenech" (PDF). Calendar March – October 2017 (redacted). U.S. Department of the Interior. April 6, 2017. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  9. ^ "TPPF files suit over federal regulation of Bone Cave Harvestman arachnid". Texas Public Policy Foundation. Retrieved May 7, 2019.
  10. ^ "Texas Parties Win in Red River Private Property Rights Lawsuit". Texas Public Policy Foundation. Retrieved May 7, 2019.
Political offices
Preceded by
Preston Bryant
Virginia Secretary of Natural Resources
Succeeded by
Molly Joseph Ward
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