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About EPA

About the Director of EPA's Office of Continuous Improvement

Serena McIlwain

Serena McIlwainSerena McIlwain is EPA’s Performance Improvement Officer (PIO) and the director of the newly created Office of Continuous Improvement.  In this role, Serena will implement a new Lean Management System at EPA to drive accountability and performance improvement.  Prior to assuming her new role, she was the Assistant Regional Administrator and Director of the Environmental Management Division at EPA Region 9 in San Francisco.  In that role, she was responsible for the overseeing the business operations for the Region. 

Serena has served in the federal government for nearly 30 years, working in both the legislative and executive branches of government. Before joining EPA in 2014, she served as the Chief Operating Officer at the Department of Energy’s Fossil Energy department, providing management and operational support for scientists, engineers, technicians and administrative professionals.   Her prior positions include serving as:
  • the Director of Workforce Planning and Management at the Architect of the Capitol,
  • Special Advisor to the Associate Director of Administration at the National Institutes of Health,
  • Senior Analyst at the Drug Enforcement Administration, and
  • Senior Advisor to the Chief Economist at the Census Bureau.

She has also served as a Senior Fellow for Congressman Louis Stokes, working primarily with the Appropriations Committee.

Serena earned Master’s Degrees in Public Administration from George Mason University and in General Administration from Central Michigan University.