WASHINGTON — President Obama on Monday will nominate Walmart’s Sylvia Mathews Burwell as his next budget director, a senior administration official said.
She previously ran the Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program as president from 2006 to 2011 and chief operating officer from 2001 to 2006.
If confirmed by the Senate, Burwell would take the helm at the Office of Management and Budget at a time of heated budget battles between the White House and congressional Republicans. She also would bring more diversity to Obama’s second-term Cabinet after criticism that top jobs were going to white men.
The president will announce Burwell’s nomination during a White House ceremony Monday morning, said the official, who requested anonymity in order to confirm the nomination ahead of Obama.
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Burwell is a Washington veteran, having served as OMB’s deputy director in the Clinton administration and chief of staff to former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin. Burwell now runs the Walmart Foundation, the retail giant’s philanthropic wing.
The official credited Burwell with being a principal architect of a series of budget plans in the 1990s that led to a budget surplus.
She would replace acting OMB director Jeffrey Zients.