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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts, 5/25/10

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

  • Mark C. Storella, Ambassador to the Republic of Zambia, Department of State
  • Matthew J. Bryza, Ambassador to the Republic of Azerbaijan, Department of State

President Obama also announced his intent to appoint Melissa Savage and C. Kenneth Smith to serve as members on the Board of Directors of the Valles Caldera Trust. Their bios are below.

President Obama said, “These talented and dedicated individuals will be valued additions to my Administration. I look forward to working with them in the months and years ahead.”

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

Mark C. Storella, Nominee for Ambassador to the Republic of Zambia, Department of State
Mark C. Storella is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service.  He currently serves as the Senior Coordinator for Iraqi Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.  He previously served as Deputy Permanent Representative and Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations and other International Organizations in Geneva.  Mr. Storella was also the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.  His other overseas assignments include Rome, Paris, Bangkok and a previous tour in Phnom Penh.  In Washington, Mr. Storella worked on the NATO and Japan desks, and as Executive Assistant to the Counselor of the Department of State.  He received his A.B. degree from Harvard College and an M.A. in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

Matthew J. Bryza, Nominee for Ambassador to the Republic of Azerbaijan, Department of State
Matthew J. Bryza is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service. He most recently served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of European and Eurasian Affairs. He previously served as the Director for Europe and Eurasia at the National Security Council in the White House. He was also Special Advisor to the President and Secretary of State on Caspian Basin Energy Diplomacy. Mr. Bryza has also served in Russia and Poland. Mr. Bryza received a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.A. in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

President Obama also announced his intent to appoint the following individuals to key administration posts:

Melissa Savage, Appointee for Member, Board of Directors of the Valles Caldera Trust
Dr. Melissa Savage is the director of the Four Corners Institute, a nonprofit organization that provides scientific advice to communities restoring their natural environments. She is also a forest geographer with a specialty in fire ecology and the southwestern conifer ecosystems. Dr. Savage is an Emerita Professor of Geography at the University of California, Los Angeles and is now an adjunct professor at the University of New Mexico.  Dr. Savage holds a M.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D in Geography from the University of Colorado.

C. Kenneth Smith, Appointee for Member, Board of Directors of the Valles Caldera Trust
Dr. C. Kenneth Smith is an associate professor of Forestry and Geology at the University of the South in Tennessee.  He is active in regional water issues and serves on the board of the Sewanee Utility District. Dr. Smith previously served as the director of New Mexico's Forest and Watershed Restoration Institute at Highlands University in Las Vegas, NM. He also spent three years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guinea, West Africa, conducting forest research and management projects.  Dr. Smith received his Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Florida, and his B.S. from Colorado State University.