Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Obama Names Foreign Policy Team

President-elect Barack Obama named his foreign policy team earlier this week in record time. For those keeping score at home, here's a rundown of his picks so far:

Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State
Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton was born on October 26, 1947. She is the junior United States Senator from New York and President-elect Barack Obama's nominee for United States Secretary of State. Her post requires Senate confirmation. She was a candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2008 presidential election. She is married to President Bill Clinton -- the 42nd president of the United States, serving as first lady of the United States from 1993 to 2001. At his press conference announcing the pick, the President-elect said, "She possesses an extraordinary intelligence and toughness, and a remarkable work ethic. ... She is an American of tremendous stature who will have my complete confidence, who knows many of the world's leaders, who will command respect in every capital and who will clearly have the ability to advance our interests around the world."

Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense
Robert Michael Gates was born on September 25, 1943. He is currently serving as the 22nd United States Secretary of Defense in George W. Bush's cabinet. He took office on December 18, 2006 replacing Donald Rumsfeld. Gates served for 26 years in the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Council, and under President George H. W. Bush as Director of Central Intelligence. Before he joined the CIA, he served with the United States Air Force. In a 2007 profile written by former National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, Gates was named one of the year's most influential people by Time magazine. If confirmed, Gates will be one of only a handful of people to hold a Cabinet-level position under two Presidents of different parties.

Eric Holder, Attorney General Eric Himpton Holder, Jr. was born January 21, 1951. He is a former Superior Court Judge in Washington, D.C., a United States Attorney and Deputy Attorney General of the United States. He was one of three members of Obama's vice-presidential selection committee. If confirmed, he will be the first African-American Attorney General of the United States. Holder is married to Sharon Malone, an obstetrician; the couple has three children. He represented the NFL during its dog fighting investigation against Michael Vick.

Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security
Janet Napolitano was born November 29, 1957. She was first elected Governor of Arizona in 2002, and re-elected in 2006. Napolitano was chair of two state governors' associations and named by Time as one of the top five governors in 2005. In 1991, while a partner with the private Phoenix law firm Lewis and Roca LLP, Napolitano served as Anita Hill's attorney during the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings. She was appointed by President Bill Clinton as United States Attorney for Arizona. She spoke at the 2000 Democratic National Convention just three weeks after having a mastectomy.

James Jones, National Security Advisor General James Logan Jones, Jr. was born December 19, 1943. He is the former Supreme Allied Commander, Europe and the Commander of the United States European Command and served as the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps. Jones retired from the United States Marine Corps in February of 2007 after 40 years of service. In 2007, Jones served as Chairman of the Congressional Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq, which investigated the capabilities of the Iraqi police and armed forces. In November 2007, he was appointed by the Secretary of State as special envoy for Middle East Security. Jones, who is 6'4", played forward on the Georgetown Hoyas men's basketball team.

Susan Rice, Ambassador to the United Nations
Susan Elizabeth Rice was born November 17, 1964. She is an American foreign policy expert. Rice served on the National Security Council and as Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs during Clinton's second term. Rice served in the Clinton administration in various capacities: at the National Security Council from 1993 to 1997; as Director for International Organizations and Peacekeeping from 1993 to 1995; and as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs from 1995 to 1997. In 1997, she became Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, serving in that capacity until Clinton left office. Rice married ABC News producer Ian Cameron in 1992; they had met as undergraduates at Stanford and they have two children. She once said when she graduated from Stanford and shook the university president's hand, he said, "I know who you are."

Timothy F. Geithner, US Secretary of the Treasury
Timothy Franz Geithner (pronounced Gaytner) was born August 18, 1961. He is the ninth president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. In that role he also serves as Vice Chairman of the Federal Open Market Committee. In March 2008, he arranged the rescue and sale of Bear Stearns and later, in the same year, he played a pivotal role in both the decision to bail out AIG as well as the government decision not to save Lehman Brothers from bankruptcy. He married his Dartmouth classmate Carole M. Sonnenfeld in 1985, with whom he has two children. In his spare time he fly fishes, plays tennis and surfs

Obama is exoected to name former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle as Health and Human Services Secretary and New Mexico Governor and former presidential candidate Bill Richardson as Commerce Secretary.


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