Last week, President Biden appointed Anne Castle as the U.S. Commissioner to the Upper Colorado River Commission.
The Upper Colorado River Commission is an interstate water administrative agency established by the action of five state legislatures and Congress with the enactment of the 1948 Upper Colorado River Basin Compact. The Commission’s role is to ensure the appropriate allocation of water from the Colorado River to the Upper Division States of Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico and to ensure compliance with the 1922 Colorado River Compact to the Lower Division States of Nevada, Arizona, and California and to the Republic of Mexico.
“We are pleased to welcome Anne to the Upper Colorado River Commission. She brings significant insight to the UCRC, which will be vital in our mission of building a more resilient Colorado River future,” said Chuck Cullom, executive director of the Upper Colorado River Commission.
Castle is currently serving as a senior fellow at the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment at the University of Colorado Law School, focusing on western water issues, including Colorado River policy and management. She is a founding member of the Water Policy Group, a consortium of water sector experts who have advised and served in high levels of office or government. From 2009 to 2014, Castle was the Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the U.S. Department of the Interior where she oversaw water and science policy for the Department and had responsibility for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey.
While at Interior, Castle spearheaded the Department’s WaterSMART program, which provides federal leadership and funding to support sustainable water supplies, and launched the federal Open Water Data Initiative. Castle provided hands-on leadership on Colorado River issues, was the Chair of the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Work Group, and a champion of Minute 319 between the U.S. and Mexico.
“Anne brings a wealth of expertise, a deep knowledge of the Colorado River, and a dedication to serving the public,” said Upper Colorado Basin Regional Director Wayne Pullan. “We look forward to continuing to work with her in this new role.”
Castle practiced law for 28 years in Denver, Colorado with the Rocky Mountain-based law firm of Holland & Hart LLP, specializing in water issues. She chaired the law firm’s management committee and its natural resources law department. She serves on the boards of the Colorado Water Trust, Western Resource Advocates, Airborne Snow Observatories, Stanford University’s Water in the West program, and the Colorado River Water and Tribes Initiative, where she is co-leading an initiative on universal access to clean drinking water on Indian reservations.