Barack Obama names Ron Kirk -former Dallas mayor- U.S. Trade Representative
As President Elect Obama moves to finish out his cabinet, he has selected former Dallas mayor Ron Kirk to the position of U.S. Trade Representative. Kirk is a currently a partner with law firm Vinson & Elkins LLP.
Born in Austin, Texas, Kirk is a graduate of Austin College, in Sherman (Texas). He is also a graduate of the University of Texas Law School.
Kirk served as Secretary of State under Ann Richards in 1994. He also ran for U.S. Senate in 2002, but was defeated by Senator John Cornyn. He was Barack Obama’s Texas point man during the Democratic Primary, and time campaigning for Obama in North Carolina during the general election.
There have been questions on Kirk’s experience and ability to handle this trade post. To date, Ron Kirk hasn’t found a job that he wasn’t able to handle.
I was having a discussion on the Kevin Ross Show a couple of days ago about the diversity of Obama’s staff. I urged Kevin to hold off before making his final decision. I think the end result has turned out pretty impressive.
High level positions have gone to African-Americans Eric Holder (Attorney General), Susan Rice (U.N. Ambassador) and Kirk. Not to mention Social Secretary Desiree Rogers and Melody Barnes, Director of the Domestic Policy Council.
Obama also named California Rep. Hilda Solis as his labor secretary. This move was lauded by the Communications Workers of America. “Representative Solis is a tremendous supporter of workers’ rights and the Employee Free Choice Act, which is critical to repairing our broken labor law,” said CWA President Larry Cohen.
And in a statement released to the media, Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa said “We’re thrilled with the selection of Rep. Hilda Solis as Labor Secretary. Under her leadership, we expect the Labor Department to return to its mission of protecting workers rather than attacking them.”
Congrats to Dallas’ own Ron Kirk on this esteemed nomination.