Obama To Nominate Walmart's Burwell As White House Budget Chief: Sources

by
Reuters
President Barack Obama plans to nominate Walmart Foundation head Sylvia Mathews Burwell to head the White House Office of Management and Budget on Monday, sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

President Barack Obama plans to nominate Walmart Foundation head Sylvia Mathews Burwell to head the White House Office of Management and Budget on Monday, sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

Burwell, 47, is a veteran of Bill Clinton's White House and has helped steer philanthropic efforts while at Wal-Mart's headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Burwell would replace Jeffrey Zients, who has been serving as acting director at the White House budget office, known by the acronym OMB.

The move will reunite her with another Clinton White House veteran, Jack Lew, who was Clinton's OMB director for a time and was recently confirmed as Obama's treasury secretary.

The sources, who asked to remain unidentified, said plans were for Burwell to be nominated on Monday.

Burwell would take over the office that carries out the administration's spending policies. The budget office will inevitably get caught up in the ongoing budget battle between Democrats and Republicans.

She brings a certain outsider status to Obama's inner circle and as such may offer a fresh perspective from the business world far away from Washington.

And Burwell would bring gender diversity to the top echelons of the Obama White House. The president has drawn some fire from critics for picking men for many top jobs.