U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, today released new findings from the Richard Windsor emails showing that former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson impersonated the alias Windsor in email correspondence. Findings also show Jackson corresponding with environmental groups and other non-EPA officials from the Windsor account.
"EPA has shown an absolute disregard for transparency with their email practices, but this one is pretty bizarre," Vitter said. "We also know now that Lisa Jackson used the alias "Richard Windsor' to correspond outside of the EPA, including with environmental activists. There are still a lot of unanswered transparency questions, and Jackson's replacement, nominee Gina McCarthy, is responsible for answering them and reinforcing transparency as a priority for the future of the Agency."
Documents obtained by the Committee reveal that Michael Martin, CEO of Effect Partners, believed he was corresponding with Lisa Jackson's assistant, "Richard Windsor," after he was unable to reach the Administrator through her personal email address. On March 4, 2010, Michael Martin wrote to Administrator Jackson's alias email account, "Hi Richard, Thanks for your help in getting this information to Lisa this last week....If you are still there, could you please call me at [redacted]," to which Jackson amenably replied: "Michael, Robert Goulding will call you tomorrow." Martin responded, "Thanks Richard!"
These emails demonstrate how the Administrator's use of the Richard Windsor alias is unprecedented and nothing like the secondary email addresses used by previous EPA Administrators; none of which could be mistaken for a separate individual.
In addition, the Committee released email correspondence showing that Jackson's use of the alias account was not limited to internal communications with EPA employees, as suggested by the EPA and EPW committee chairman Barbara Boxer. Several emails document Jackson using the alias email account to correspond with officials at the White House, including Cass Sunstein, former Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, who referred to her alias address as her "special email."
The documents also reveal that Jackson used her alias email account to correspond with environmental activists. In one email sent on June 19, 2009 from her alias account, Jackson communicated with Michelle Depass of the Ford Foundation who interestingly notified Jackson that soon-to-be EPA Deputy Assistant Administrator Shalini Vajjhala was going to work at the White House Council on Environmental Quality while also on payroll at the environmental group Resources for the Future.