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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

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

  • Deborah A. P. Hersman, Chairman, National Transportation Safety Board
  • Thomas C. Krajeski, Ambassador to the Kingdom of Bahrain, Department of State
  • Robert A. Mandell, Ambassador to Luxembourg, Department of State


The President also announced his intent to appoint the following individual to a key Administration post:

  • Hal Simpson, United States Representative, Rio Grande Compact Commission


President Obama said, “These men and women have demonstrated knowledge and dedication throughout their careers. I am grateful they have chosen to take on these important roles, and I look forward to working with them in the months and years to come.”

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

Deborah A. P. Hersman, Nominee for Chairman, National Transportation Safety Board
Deborah A. P. Hersman is currently Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board.  She has served on the Board since 2004.  During her tenure at the Board, she has been the Member on the scene of 19 major transportation accidents and has chaired numerous Board hearings, forum and symposia on accident investigations and transportation safety issues.  Before joining the Board, Chairman Hersman was a Senior Professional Staff Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation from 1999 to 2004, where she was responsible for a number of transportation issues.  From 1992 to 1999, she served as Staff Director and Senior Legislative Aide to Congressman Bob Wise of West Virginia.  Chairman Hersman earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in Political Science and International Studies from Virginia Tech, and a Master of Science degree in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University.

Thomas C. Krajeski, Nominee for Ambassador to the Kingdom of Bahrain, Department of State
Ambassador Thomas C. Krajeski, a career member of the Foreign Service since 1979, currently serves as Senior Vice President of the National Defense University.  Prior to this assignment, from 2008 to 2009, Ambassador Krajeski served at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad as the Senior Advisor to the Ambassador on Northern Iraq Affairs.  From 2007 to 2008, he was the Director of Career Development and Assignments for the Department of State.  From 2004 to 2007, Ambassador Krajeski served as U.S. Ambassador to Yemen.  Previous overseas assignments include:  Political Advisor to Ambassador L. Paul Bremer at the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, Iraq; Principal Officer and Consul General at the U.S. Consulate in Dubai, UAE; Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt; Deputy Chief of the Consular Section in Warsaw, Poland; Consular Officer in Madras, India; and General Services Officer in Kathmandu, Nepal.  In Washington, Ambassador Krajeski has previously served as the Director and Deputy Director of the Office of Northern Gulf Affairs in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, Political Desk Officer on the India Desk, Senior Watch Officer in the Operations Center, and in the State Department Press Office.  Ambassador Krajeski received his B.A. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Robert A. Mandell, Nominee for Ambassador to Luxembourg
Robert A. Mandell is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Greater Properties, Inc., a commercial real estate venture in Central Florida.  Previously, he served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Greater Construction Corp., from 1998 until 2005.  Mr. Mandell serves on the Board of Directors of Florida Hospital, the Burnham Institute for Medical Research of La Jolla, California, and the Vermont Studio Center. He also serves on the Audit and Finance Committee of the Adventist Health System.  Previously, Mr. Mandell was a member on the Orange County Chairman’s Transportation Commission and on the Orange County Public Schools’ Blue Ribbon Panel on Education.  In 2010, he was appointed to the President’s Export Council.  Mr. Mandell holds a B.S. and a J.D. from the University of Florida.

President Obama announced his intent to appoint the following individual to a key Administration post:

Hal Simpson, United States Representative, Rio Grande Compact Commission
Hal Simpson has been a consulting engineer in water resources management since retiring from the Colorado Division of Water Resources (DWR) in June 2007 after 34 years of service.  Mr. Simpson served as State Engineer at DWR from 1992-2007, where he was responsible for the direction and management of the Division including overseeing distribution and administration of water resources.  As State Engineer he also served as Colorado's commissioner on five interstate compacts, including the Rio Grande Compact Commission.  Prior to being appointed State Engineer, Mr. Simpson held several other management positions with the DWR, including a stint as Deputy State Engineer from 1985-1992.  Mr. Simpson is a registered professional engineer and a Diplomate in Water Resources Engineering with the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers.  He received his B.S. and M.S. in civil engineering from Colorado State University.