Coalition Leadership

National Co-Chairs

Jim Nicholson

Secretary Jim Nicholson has led a long and distinguished career both in the public and private sector. Nicholson most notably served as Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs under the George W. Bush Administration, and he also served as U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See. During his tenure as ambassador, Pope John Paul II knighted Mr. Nicholson for his leadership on human rights issues in Europe. He was a director of New Community Development Corporation and Commissioner of the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services (DACOWITS), both Presidential appointments. He was also the chairman of the Federal Interagency Council on Homelessness.

Learn more about Jim Nicholson’s commitment to responsibly exploring and developing America’s offshore energy.


Virginia Chair

Mike Watson

Mike Watson represented the 93rd district in Virginia’s House of Delegates from 2012– 2014. Prior to serving as Delegate, Watson established Control Automation Technologies Corporation in Virginia and North Carolina and was named the state’s Small Business of the Year in 1998. As delegate, Watson was a workforce education advocate and cofounded the Virginia General Assembly’s first ever bi-partisan Business Development Caucus.