Energy Department Names New Manager at Savannah River Site

AIKEN, S.C. (February 12, 2018) -- The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Savannah River Operations Office announced today the selection of Michael D. Budney as new Manager. Budney will succeed Jack Craig, who is retiring after 32 years of federal service including 29 years in leadership positions associated with environmental cleanup activities at the DOE Office of Environmental Management (EM).
Budney, a retired Captain from the U.S, Navy with 29 years of service, brings to the position 20 years of senior leadership experience while serving in the U.S. Navy, the departments of Defense and Energy and in the private sector.
“Mike is a highly respected leader with extensive experience that positions him to lead the Savannah River team,” said James Owendoff, EM Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary. “I am confident he will maintain the high standards of managing one of the most diverse and complex sites in DOE and continue the tremendous progress underway in Savannah River.”
As the new manager for Savannah River, Budney will lead a workforce of about 11,000 government and contractor personnel, with an annual budget of approximately $2 billion, covering the vast 310-square mile site near Aiken, South Carolina.
“I am privileged to be chosen to lead Savannah River Site at this important time when the site is achieving real progress in a number of areas, including building on its record of successfully emptying and closing underground waste tanks,” Budney said.
Budney, a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, served as an officer aboard four submarines and three ships. In his major command, he spent two years as commanding officer of the USS Emory S. Land, a U.S. Navy submarine tender and the lead ship of her class. In that post he commanded 1,200 sailors and directed computer and communications systems, electrical, electronic, mechanical, propulsion plant and nuclear maintenance on U.S. Navy submarines and surface ships operating throughout Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

He also served two and a half years as commanding officer of the USS Pennsylvania (SSBN 735B) an Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine, where he was responsible for all aspects of ship and nuclear propulsion plant operations. The vessel was awarded Battle Efficiency “E” for superior operational performance.

Budney’s final assignment was as Deputy Director of the Nuclear Command and Control System Support Staff, performing oversight duties of all aspects of the national nuclear command and control system for the Commander of U.S. Strategic Command.


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Most recently, Budney was Director of the Office of Business Operations in the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Among other responsibilities, he led EERE’s workforce planning, information technology and project management efforts and coordinated support service contract and acquisition activities.

Jack Craig served as Savannah River Site Manager for the past three years. During his tenure the site achieved a number of significant milestones, including achieving operational closure of Tank 16, the eighth underground waste tank to be successfully closed; and completing construction of the Salt Waste Processing Facility, which, once in operation, will significantly increase the site’s ability to treat tank waste.

Craig’s federal service including three years associated with Naval Sea Systems Command. Within the Department of Energy he served as acting Associate Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Environmental Management at DOE headquarters; serving as Director of the Consolidated Business Center in Cincinnati, Ohio; and as Deputy Manager of the DOE Ohio Field Office where he was responsible for the management, cleanup and restoration of five separate DOE facilities (Fernald, Mound, Battelle-Columbus and Ashtabula) and the West Valley Demonstration Project in New York.

In 2015, Craig received the Presidential Rank of Distinguished Executive award, the nation’s highest civil service recognition. In 2009, he was bestowed the Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive award.
“Jack Craig’s is an exemplary leader and his long record of achievements speak for themselves. We are deeply grateful for his service and I know he will be greatly missed by those who have has the honor and pleasure of serving with him,” Owendoff said. “My message to Jack is simple: Job well done!”

The Savannah River Site Office of Environmental Management mission includes safely storing, treating, and disposing of a variety of radioactive and hazardous waste streams, cleaning up the environment, deactivating and decommissioning unneeded facilities, stabilization and immobilization of high-level waste, and the secure storage of foreign and domestic nuclear materials including spent (used) nuclear fuel and plutonium.


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