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Office of the Press Secretary

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key Administration posts:

  • Mark L. Asquino – Ambassador to the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Department of State
  • Derek H. Chollet – Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Department of Defense
  • Kathleen H. Hicks – Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Department of Defense
  • Susanna Loeb - Member, Board of Directors of the National Board for Education Sciences

President Obama said, “I am proud to nominate such impressive men and women to these important roles, and I am grateful they have agreed to lend their considerable talents to this Administration.  I look forward to working with them in the coming months and years.”

President Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key Administration posts:

Mark L. Asquino, Nominee for Ambassador to the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Department of State
Mark L. Asquino, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service with the rank of Minister Counselor, currently serves as the Executive Assistant in the Office of the Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights at the U.S. Department of State.  From 2010 to 2011, he served as a Senior Public Diplomacy Fellow at George Washington University.  Previously, he served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Sudan and at the U.S. Embassy in Kazakhstan.   Mr. Asquino has also served overseas in Caracas, Panama City, Madrid, Bucharest, Santiago, and Tashkent.  In Washington, he has served as the Principal Deputy Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization at the U.S. Department of State.  Mr. Asquino received his A.B. and Ph.D. in American Civilization from Brown University.

Derek H. Chollet, Nominee for Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Department of Defense
Derek H. Chollet is the Senior Director for Strategic Planning for the National Security Staff at the White House.  From 2009 to 2011, he was Principal Deputy Director in the Office of Policy Planning at the Department of State.  Prior to joining the State Department, Mr. Chollet was a Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security (2007-2009), a Nonresident Fellow at the Global Economy and Development Program at Brookings Institution (2006-2009), Adjunct Associate Professor for the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University (2006-2009), and a Fellow for the International Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (2005-2007).  From 1999 to 2001, he served as Chief Speechwriter for the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Richard Holbrooke and Special Adviser to Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott.  Earlier in his career, Mr. Chollet worked as a research assistant for Warren Christopher (1997-1999), Richard Holbrooke (1997-1998), and James A. Baker III (1993-1995).  Mr. Chollet holds a B.A. from Cornell University.

Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks, Nominee for Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Department of Defense
Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks currently serves as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Strategy, Plans, and Forces.  Previously, from 2006 to 2009, she was a Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).  Before joining CSIS, from 1993 to 2006, Dr. Hicks served in a variety of career civil service positions within the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense.  These roles included Director for Policy Planning and Director for Homeland Defense Strategic Planning and Program Integration.  Dr. Hicks holds an A.B. from Mount Holyoke College, an M.P.A. from the University of Maryland, and a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Dr. Susanna Loeb, Nominee for Member, Board of Directors of the National Board for Education Sciences
Dr. Susanna Loeb is a professor of education and Director of the Center for Education Policy Analysis at Stanford University.  She also serves as a Senior Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, Director of the Institute for Research on Education Policy and Practice, and Co-Director of Policy Analysis for California Education.  In addition to her work at Stanford, Dr. Loeb is currently a policy council member with the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management, co-editor of Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, and a Faculty Research Fellow with the National Bureau of Economic Research.  From 2010 to 2011, Dr. Loeb served as President of the Association for Education Finance and Policy.  She previously served as a member of the National Research Council Committee on Test-Based Accountability and the Council Committee on Evaluation of the Impact of Teacher Certification by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.  Dr. Loeb received a B.A. in Political Science and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Stanford University, and an M.P.P. and Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan.

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