Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                             March 12, 2009

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: Demetrios Marantis, Nominee for Deputy United States Trade Representative; Kristina M. Johnson, Nominee for Under Secretary of Energy; Gina McCarthy, Nominee for Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation, Environmental Protection Agency; and Ronald H. Weich, Nominee for Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legislative Affairs, Department of Justice.

President Obama said, "Each of these individuals brings a unique talent and dedication to the causes we are tackling everyday in my administration. Together they bring decades of public service and diverse backgrounds that will serve the American people well as we work to take on the big challenges of our time like strengthening our economy, achieving energy independence, and making our government the most accessible and transparent in history.  I am grateful that they have agreed to serve in these capacities."

President Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals today:

Demetrios Marantis, Nominee for Deputy United States Trade Representative
Demetrios Marantis is currently Chief International Trade Counsel (Majority) for the Senate Finance Committee. In this capacity, he advises Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D - MT), as well as members and staff of the Finance Committee and Democratic Caucus, on trade and economic issues.  Marantis joined the committee in February of 2005 after serving as Issues Director for Sen. John Edwards on the Kerry-Edwards 2004 presidential campaign. Prior to the campaign, Marantis spent two years in Hanoi as Chief Legal Advisor for the U.S.-Vietnam Trade Council where he provided technical assistance on international trade matters.  Between 1998 and 2002, Marantis served as Associate General Counsel in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative where he negotiated provisions of international trade agreements – including the U.S.-Singapore and U.S. Chile Free Trade Agreements – and represented the United States in WTO dispute settlement proceedings, including the U.S.-Mexico dispute on telecommunications. Marantis also worked for five years in the Washington, D.C. and Brussels, Belgium offices of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld.  He holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an A.B. in Public and International Affairs from Princeton University.

Kristina M. Johnson, Nominee for Under Secretary of Energy
Kristina M. Johnson is currently the provost and senior vice president for academic affairs of Johns Hopkins University. Previously, Johnson served as the Dean of Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering from 1999-2007 where she helped to set up interdisciplinary efforts in photonics, bioengineering and biologically inspired materials, and energy and the environment. Before that she was on the faculty of the University of Colorado, Boulder from 1985-1999 where she led an NSF Engineering Research Center and involved engineers, mathematicians, physicists, chemists and psychologists in working to make computers faster and better connected. Johnson is an electrical engineer with more than 129 US and foreign patents or patents pending. These inventions include pioneering work on liquid crystal on silicon (LCOS) microdisplays and their integration into demonstration and commercial systems such as heads-up automotive displays (HUD); pattern recognition systems for cancer prescreening, object tracking and document processing; HDTV and 3D projection displays; and 3D holographic memories. She has co-founded several companies and is the author of 142 peer reviewed publications. Johnson has received several awards including the John Fritz Medal, widely considered the highest award in the engineering profession. She earned degrees from Stanford University including a Ph.D. in 1984 and both a bachelor's and a master's degree in electrical engineering in 1981.

Gina McCarthy, Nominee for Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation, Environmental Protection Agency
Gina McCarthy is currently the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).  McCarthy came to the Connecticut DEP from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, where she worked on environmental issues at the state and local level for 25 years in a variety of high-ranking positions. Just prior to joining the Connecticut DEP, she served as the Deputy Secretary of Operations for the Massachusetts Office of Commonwealth Development, a "Super Secretariat" that coordinates policies and programs of that state’s environmental, transportation, energy and housing agencies. In 1990, Governor Dukakis appointed McCarthy as Chair of the Council to oversee the review of a proposed hazardous waste incinerator in the Boston area.

Ronald H. Weich, Nominee for Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legislative Affairs, Department of Justice
Ronald H. Weich has extensive legislative expertise from his twelve years as legal counsel to three United States Senators.  He is currently Chief Counsel to Majority Leader Harry Reid, where he advises the Majority Leader regarding civil and criminal justice matters, anti-terror policies, judicial nominations and institutional legal issues.  Earlier in his career, Weich served in a similar role for Senators Edward M.  Kennedy and Arlen Specter.  He also advised Senator Kennedy on public health policy as General Counsel to the Labor and Human Resources Committee.  From 1997-2004, Weich was a Partner at Zuckerman Spaeder LLP where he represented clients in civil and quasi-criminal matters and counseled clients on public policy and legislative strategy.  Before arriving on Capitol Hill, Weich was Special Counsel to the U.S. Sentencing Commission where he served as a legislative liaison, drafted guideline amendments, and represented the Commission in federal district courts.  Weich began his career as an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan, leading hundreds of criminal prosecutions from 1983-87.  Weich received his B.A. from Columbia University and J.D. from Yale Law School.  He also studied at the London School of Economics and Political Science.  Weich was named one of the 50 most influential congressional staff members in 2007 and 2008.


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