Biden Beefs Up Staff
By Philip Rucker
Vice President-elect Joe Biden continued to fill top positions in his office today, naming three new senior staff members with broad portfolios.
Mike Donilon, a Biden adviser since 1981 who traveled with him during the general election campaign and helped him prepare for the vice-presidential debate, will serve as counselor to the vice president. Donilon is a longtime Democratic political adviser, having worked on Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign as well as advertising for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee over the past two election cycles.
Biden tapped Terrell McSweeny, the deputy chief of staff and policy director to his U.S. Senate office, to serve as domestic policy adviser to the vice president. She has advised three presidential candidates on domestic policy, and has counseled Biden on issues such as women's rights, domestic violence, judicial nominations, immigration and civil rights.
Evan Ryan, deputy campaign manager of Biden's presidential primary campaign and later an adviser during the general election campaign, will serve as assistant to the vice president for intergovernmental affairs and public liaison. Ryan is a veteran of the Clinton White House, having served first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton as special assistant to the chief of staff and later as deputy director of scheduling. Ryan was deputy communications director for John Kerry's presidential campaign and has worked for the Clinton Global Initiative and other non-governmental organizations.
"These talented individuals build on the professional, dedicated and diverse team being assembled to lead the Obama-Biden Administration," Biden said in a statement. "Mike Donilon has been one of my closest advisors for more than 25 years, is one of the most astute counselors in national affairs I have ever met -- he provided advice that was invaluable on the Obama-Biden campaign in 2008. Terrell McSweeny is an expert on domestic policy and has established herself as someone highly-regarded and experienced in national policy matters. Evan Ryan has a unique blend of White House management experience and public outreach skills, which will make her an indispensable asset to the Obama-Biden Administration."
Donilon's brother, Washington lawyer Tom Donilon, a former chief of staff to Secretary of State Warren Christopher, serves as co-chairman of Obama's transition team for the State Department and is a leading candidate for a national security position in the administration. And Tom Donilon's wife, Catherine M. Russell, is a former adviser to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and recently was named chief of staff to Biden's wife, Jill Biden.
Web Politics Editor
November 25, 2008; 3:30 PM ET
Categories: B_Blog , Cast of Characters , Joe Biden
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