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Clinton bids adieu to Jack Lew

At noon on Tuesday, President Obama formally announces Jacob Lew as his new director of the Office of Management and Budget -- filling a key hole on his economic team, but creating an equally big one at the State Department.

Lew, currently serving as Deputy Secretary of State for management and resources, has played a vital role in the day-to-day operations of the State Department. Secretary Clinton acknowledged as much in a letter to State Department employees on Tuesday morning.

Text below:


I'm writing to let you know about a change which will affect all of us at State and USAID.
Today, President Obama is announcing that he is naming Deputy Secretary of State Jacob J. Lew to be the next Director of the Office of Management and Budget, succeeding Peter Orszag who recently announced that he would be leaving at the end of this month.

Regardless of whether you have had the opportunity to work directly with Jack, we have all benefited from his many contributions here at State and USAID. As Deputy Secretary for Management and Resources -- a post never before filled -- he has been a tireless and effective advocate for both the State Department and USAID, and for our global development efforts, our civilian efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq, our budget goals, the first-ever QDDR, and in ensuring that each of us has the tools needed to accomplish our missions.

This news is obviously bittersweet. While I was hoping never to have to replace Jack, the President and our country need his leadership at OMB. His prior experience in the Clinton Administration helping to take America's budget from deficit to surplus makes him uniquely prepared to lead at this time.

I hope this note finds you all safe and well wherever you are in the world,


Hillary Rodham Clinton

P.S. In an effort to support Jack in his new endeavor, I'd like to personally encourage all of you to submit ideas for this year's Securing America's Value and Efficiency (SAVE) Award contest. President Obama established the annual competition to identify the best strategies for saving money and boosting performance in the federal government. The winner of this award will be invited to the White House to present the winning idea to the President - and maybe even Jack - and the idea will also be included in the FY 2012 budget. For more information and to submit ideas, please visit by Thursday, July 22, 2010.

By Anne Kornblut  | July 13, 2010; 11:54 AM ET
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