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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Statement by President Obama on the Retirement of Deputy Secretary of State William J. Burns

Since I met Bill in Moscow in 2005, I have admired his skill and precision. Since I took office, I have relied on him for candid advice and sensitive diplomatic missions – he has been a skilled advisor, consummate diplomat, and inspiration to generations of public servants. Given his vital role on our leading priorities, earlier this year I asked him to delay his retirement, and I’m grateful to him and Lisa for doing so.  The country is stronger for Bill’s service.

Click HERE for a photo of President Barack Obama meeting with William "Bill" Burns, Deputy Secretary of State, for lunch in the Oval Office Private Dining Room, Feb. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)