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Obama taps longtime Biden friend for post at State

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President Obama plans to nominate Cathy Russell, who serves as chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden’s wife Jill, to the position of ambassador at large for global women’s issues at the State Department.

During remarks at a women’s history reception at the White House on Monday, Mr. Obama announced his intention to nominate Ms. Russell, who is married to Obama national security adviser Tom Donilon.

After the event, Mr. Biden and Mrs. Biden sent out a joint statement praising Ms. Russell for her “hard work,” saying they cannot imagine a better choice for the job.

“Through the more than 25 years we have known Cathy, she has made a tremendous different in the fight to promote gender equality and advance the status of women and girls, helped raise aware about the issues critical to military families through Joining Forces, and strengthened the role community colleges play in creating the workforce of the future,” they said.

“We will miss Cathy, but know that she will make a real difference in the lives of women and girls throughout the world in her new role,” they added.

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Susan Crabtree

Susan Crabtree is an award-winning investigative reporter with more than 15 years of reporting experience in Washington, D.C. Her reporting about bribery, corruption and conflict-of-interest issues on Capitol Hill has led to several FBI and ethics investigations, as well as consequences for members within their caucuses and at the ballot box. Susan can be reached at

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