Notable and Historic Women Leaders Tapped to Join the Biden-Harris Administration: Part 3

The Biden-Harris administration has selected nominees for key roles in the White House, and the administration appears to be continuing to keep gender and racial diversity in mind. Over the past two weeks, we have covered the Presidential transition as the new appointees are announced. These are the notable women handpicked to join the historic administration since then:

Jennifer Granholm: Secretary of Energy

President-elect Joe Biden selected former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm to lead the Department of Energy, a vital role in Biden’s pledge to move the country off fossil fuels.

Granholm, who was the first woman to serve as Governor in Michigan in 2003, would be only the second woman to lead the Energy department in its history. Her substantial experience in the auto industry will be informative in helping the country transition into clean energy, one of Biden’s top goals as President.

Deb Haaland: Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior

The Biden transition team announced on Thursday that he will nominate Congresswoman Deb Haaland from New Mexico to serve as Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The department, which oversees natural resources and protected areas, will play a vital role in fulfilling Biden’s pledge to combat climate change.

Haaland was one of the first two Native American women elected to Congress, where she is the Vice-Chair of the Natural Resources Committee and serves on the Armed Services Committee. Before that, she was the chairwoman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico.

If confirmed, Haaland will make history as the first Native American interior secretary, a significant choice for a role that presides over tribal lands.

Gina McCarthy: Domestic Climate Coordinator

Former EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy will join the White House as Domestic Climate Coordinator. She will be tasked with lowering U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

McCarthy worked closely with former President Barack Obama as head of the EPA and played a key role in Obama’s climate change initiative, the Clean Power Plan. Before that, she was commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental protection and helped create a program to decrease greenhouse emissions across multiple states.

Susan Rice: Director of the Domestic Policy Council

President-elect Joe Biden has tapped Susan Rice to serve as Director of the Domestic Policy Council. In this role, she will advise the incoming administration on immigration, healthcare, and racial inequality issues.

Rice formerly served under President Barack Obama as his national security adviser and U.N. ambassador. Earlier than that, she was Bill Clinton’s U.S. assistant secretary of state for African affairs. She was the youngest person to serve as a regional assistant secretary of state at 32 years old and is credited with improving policies between the U.S. and Africa.

Katherine Tai: U.S. Trade Representative

Katherine Tai, chief trade counsel for the Committee on Ways and Means, is Biden’s pick for U.S. Trade Representative. She will be responsible for managing American trade rules and terms with foreign countries.

Prior to her role as trade lawyer for the House Ways and Means, she was chief counsel for China trade enforcement in the Office of General Counsel. Tai played a key part in negotiating the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

If confirmed by the Senate, Tai would be the first woman of color and first Asian American to serve as the top U.S. trade representative.

You can read Part 1 of this story here, and Part 2 here.

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