WASHINGTON (AP) – President Barack Obama on Monday nominated Wal-Mart’s Sylvia Mathews Burwell as his next budget chief, thrusting her into the center of Washington’s heated partisan budget battles.
Obama announced Burwell’s selection to lead the Office of Management and Budget during a White House ceremony, noting that her appointment comes as government-wide spending cuts are going into effect that he said mean “eventually a lot of people are going to feel some pain.” The White House and congressional Republicans were unable to reach a deal to avert the cuts ahead of last Friday’s deadline.
If confirmed by the Senate, Burwell would bring more diversity to Obama’s second-term Cabinet following criticism that many top jobs were going to white men.
Burwell is a Washington veteran, having served as chief of staff to former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin and as OMB’s deputy director in the Clinton administration, where Obama noted she was on a team that presided over three consecutive budget surpluses. She has been running the Wal-Mart Foundation, the retail giant’s philanthropic wing, and previously served as president of the Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program, where Obama said she helped the organization “grow into a global force for good.”
“Sylvia knows her way around a budget,” Obama said. “But as granddaughter of Greek immigrants, she also understands that our goal when we put together a budget is not just to make the numbers add up. Our goal is also to reignite the true engine of economic growth, and that is a strong growing middle class, to offer ladders of opportunity for anybody willing to climb them.”
Wal-Mart president Mike Duke called Burwell a strong leader with a “clear vision for making big things happen.”
“She understands business and the role that business, government and civil society must play to build a strong economy that provides opportunity and strengthens communities across the country,” Duke said in a statement.
Burwell would replace acting OMB director Jeffrey Zients, who has been discussed as a contender for other top administration posts.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food
- 5 spring cleaning spots everyone forgets
- 5 reasons to look forward to watching the D-backs this season
- Common virus attributed to spike in head and neck cancers
- 5 signs it’s time to end your timeshare ownership
- 3 most overlooked ways to keep your home healthy