President-elect Barack Obama has nominated Lisa Jackson to succeed Stephen L. Johnson as administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (

Jackson spent 16 years at the EPA in Washington and in New York before being hired at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection in 2002. Jackson was named the head of the department in 2006 by Gov. Jon Corziney. She left earlier this month to take a job as Corzine”s chief of staff. In New Jersey, Jackson has passed mandatory reductions in greenhouse gases, reformed the cleanup of contaminated sites, and established a scientific advisory board to review agency decisions.

“Lisa Jackson has a wealth of experience and a solid record of achievement in environmental service. As a former EPA executive, she is uniquely qualified to recognize the challenges facing the agency and lead from day one,” said current EPA administrator Johnson of Jackson’s nomination, in a prepared statement.

Should she accept the nomination, Jackson would be the first African-American to lead the EPA.