Cast of Characters
Don Gips Selected as White House Director of Personnel as Obama Rounds Out Staff
By Philip Rucker
President-elect Barack Obama and Vice President-elect Joe Biden continued to round out their White House staff this afternoon, naming seven new appointments, including Don Gips as director of presidential personnel.
Gips, who is on the advisory board of the transition team and helped Obama assemble his Senate staff, will oversee White House staffing. He currently is on leave from Level 3 Communications, where he is chief strategy officer and leads merger and acquisition efforts. He previously served as a chief domestic policy adviser to former vice president Al Gore.
Obama tapped Bradley J. Kiley to become director of the office of management and administration, where he will oversee White House operations, including travel. Kiley is operations director for the transition team and served a similar role during the Clinton administration as deputy assistant to the president for management and administration. Meanwhile, Susan Sher, a vice president and general counsel at the University of Chicago Medical Center, will serve as associate counsel to the president, where she will provide legal advice to first lady Michelle Obama.
Other appointments announced today include: Pete Souza, a veteran photographer who was the Washington-based national photographer for the Chicago Tribune, as chief White House photographer; Brian McKeon, a longtime aide to Biden, as deputy national security adviser to the vice president; Courtney O'Donnell, marketing director at the William J. Clinton Foundation, as communications director for Jill Biden; and Carlos E. Elizondo, an events director at Georgetown University, as residence manager and social secretary for the Bidens.
"I am honored to have this talented group of individuals joining my staff," Obama said in a statement. "They bring diverse backgrounds and unique perspectives to our team. I am confident that the American people will benefit from their experience and expertise and Vice President-elect Biden and I look forward to seeking their advice and counsel as we work to move our country forward."
Posted at 4:22 PM ET on Jan 5, 2009
Cast of Characters
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