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Mary Penny Thompson
Acting Assistant Secretary for Administration
Mary Penny Thompson was named the department’s new assistant secretary for administration in Jan. 2013. She overseesthe department’s administrative divisions, including Human Resources; Information Technology Services; Purchase and Services; and Budget, Planning and Analysis.
Before becoming assistant secretary, Mary Penny had served as DENR's chief deputy secretary since May 2012, and had served as DENR’s General Counsel since October 2005. Prior to joining DENR, Mary Penny served in the Attorney General’s Office for eight years. During that time she litigated and provided advice on coastal, water, land, soil and water conservation, and licensing board issues. In February 2004, she participated in the Interchange of Government Employees program by taking on the duties of Assistant General Counsel for the Department and advising on a wide range of issues.
Mary Penny obtained her undergraduate Bachelors of Science degree in Biological Sciences from N.C. State University. She obtained her law degree from Tulane University Law School, which included a specialty in environmental law.