Obama deputizes seven; appoints one


The White House today announced seven nominees for deputy and assistant secretaries and administrators.

Here it goes:

  1. Kathleen Merrigan is Obama’s nominee for deputy secretary of the Agriculture Department. She is currently the director of the Agriculture, Food and Environment masters and doctorate program at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in Boston.
  2. Jon Cannon was nominated to be the deputy administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. He is currently the director of the Environmental and Land Use Law Program at the University of Virginia. He previously worked at the EPA during the Reagan, Bush I and Clinton administrations, eventually becoming general counsel of the agency. 
  3. Seth Harris, a former Clinton-administration Labor official, has been nominated for the job of deputy secretary of the Labor Department. He was the leader of Obama’s agency working group for labor, education and transportation during the transition. He is currently the director of Labor and Employment Law Programs at New York Law School. 
  4. John Morton was nominated to become the assistant secretary for Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the Homeland Security Department. He is a career Justice Department employee who has focused on immigration enforcement and criminal prosecution. 
  5. Ashton Carter, another former Clinton administration official, is Obama’s pick for under secretary of Defense for acquisition, technology and logistics. He is the current chair of the International and Global Affairs faculty at Harvard’s the Kennedy School. 
  6. April Boyd was nominated to be the assistant secretary for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs at the Commerce Department. She was the chief of staff for Rep. Ellen Tauscher, D-Calif. 
  7. Tom Strickland has been nominated to be assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the Interior Department. He is currently the chief of staff for Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.

In case you were counting that’s one hill staffer, one current career fed, one current political appointee, two former Clinton officials and four academics. But no matter their backgrounds, all of these folks have to be confirmed by the Senate before taking on their new roles.

In other transition news, Obama appointed Steve Rattner to be counselor to the Treasury Secretary, where he will lead the Treasury’s efforts to save the American automobile industry


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