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The White House

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts, 5-1-09


Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                      May 1, 2009

President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals for key administration posts: Kathy Greenlee, Assistant Secretary, Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services; Wilma A. Lewis, Assistant Secretary for Land and Mineral Management, Department of the Interior; and John J. Sullivan, Commissioner, Federal Election Commission.

President Obama said, "The American people will be well-served by these skilled and dedicated individuals. I am confident that they will be assets in my administration as we work to bring about real change in our country, and I am grateful for their decision to serve and their commitment to my reform agenda."

President Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals today:

Kathy Greenlee, Nominee for Assistant Secretary, Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services
Kathy Greenlee has served as Secretary of Aging for the state of Kansas since January 2006. In that capacity, she has led a cabinet-level agency with 192 full-time staff members and a total budget of $495 million.  Her department oversees the state’s Older Americans Act programs, the distribution of Medicaid long-term care payments and regulation of nursing home licensure and survey processes. From 2004-2006, Greenlee served as State Long-Term Care Ombudsman in Kansas, and prior to that, was the state’s Assistant Secretary of Aging. From 1999-2002, Greenlee served as general counsel at the Kansas Insurance Department. During her tenure there, she led the team of regulators who evaluated the proposed sale of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas, and oversaw the Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas program. Greenlee also served as Chief of Staff and Chief of Operations for Governor Kathleen Sebelius. She is a graduate of the University of Kansas with degrees in business administration and law.

Wilma A. Lewis, Nominee for Assistant Secretary for Land and Mineral Management, Department of the Interior
Wilma A. Lewis has extensive litigation experience with federal trial and appellate complex civil litigation, including class actions as well as internal investigations.  Ms. Lewis served as Managing Associate General Counsel with Freddie Mac from October 2007 to December 2008 and was a partner at Crowell & Moring from June 2001 to September 2007.  Ms. Lewis served as the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia - the first woman appointed by the President to serve in that capacity- from January 1998 to April 2001.  During her tenure, she led the largest U.S. Attorney's Office in the country, with responsibility for most federal and local criminal investigations and prosecutions, and most federal civil proceedings on behalf of the United States in the Nation's Capital.  From April 1995 to January 1998, she served as Inspector General for the U.S. Department of the Interior - the first African-American to hold that position - where she oversaw investigative and audit activities designed to ferret out fraud, waste and mismanagement in Department of the Interior programs and operations.  Ms. Lewis' public service also included her tenure as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia (1986-1993), where she attained the position of Deputy Chief of the Civil Division, and as Associate Solicitor for the Division of General Law at the U.S. Department of the Interior (1993-1995).  Before entering public service, Ms. Lewis served as an Associate in the General Litigation Group at the Washington, D.C. law firm of Steptoe & Johnson (1981-1986).  Ms. Lewis is a member of the District of Columbia Bar Association and is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the Supreme Court of the United States.  In 2003, the Harvard Law Bulletin featured Ms. Lewis as one of 50 female graduates of Harvard Law School who have used their legal education "to take them to extraordinary places."  Ms. Lewis earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with distinction from Swarthmore College in 1978, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School in 1981.  Ms. Lewis is a native of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

John J. Sullivan, Nominee for Commissioner, Federal Election Commission 
John J. Sullivan is a leader in the labor community and has been a staunch advocate for election reform and voter protection.  Since 1997, Sullivan has served as the Associate General Counsel at the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), where he advises one of the largest independent political programs in the country.  From 1994 to 1997, Sullivan worked as Associate General Counsel for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), where he was responsible for union governance issues and the administration of the election provisions of the federal consent decree with the Teamsters Union.  Prior to that, Sullivan worked as an associate and partner at the law firm of Guerrieri, Edmond & James, where he was involved in the firm’s representation of railway and airline unions in federal court litigation, bankruptcy proceedings and before federal administrative agencies.  From 1990 to 1992, Sullivan worked in the Office of the Election Officer at the IBT as the election protest coordinator and counsel to the court-appointed Election Officer.  Sullivan has also represented the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) in public employee organizing campaigns.  Sullivan has extensive additional election experience.  He contributed to the Florida recount efforts in the 2000 presidential election; helped coordinate union voter protection activities in the 2004 general election; was a member of the team that directed the successful recount in the 2004 Washington gubernatorial election; worked as an observer for elections in Ukraine; served on Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley’s Transition Team on Election Reform; served as the Vice President of the Montgomery County Board of Elections; and volunteered for voter protection efforts in Ohio, Indiana, and Pennsylvania for the 2008 presidential primaries.  Sullivan received his B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of Massachusetts-Boston and graduated with a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law.