Two More Top Officials Leaving State Dept. Economics Team
More key implementers of Hillary Clinton’s “economic statecraft” agenda are headed for the exits with no immediate replacements in sight, The Cable has learned. For laymen, this crew of business-oriented officials was best recognized for transforming the State Department into a relentless booster of U.S. businesses abroad — an effort that partially stepped on the ...
More key implementers of Hillary Clinton's "economic statecraft" agenda are headed for the exits with no immediate replacements in sight, The Cable has learned.
For laymen, this crew of business-oriented officials was best recognized for transforming the State Department into a relentless booster of U.S. businesses abroad — an effort that partially stepped on the toes of the Department of Commerce and most definitely helped explain Clinton’s eye-popping odometer at State (almost a million miles traveled during her tenure.)
At the top the totem pole of is Robert Hormats (pictured right), the Under Secretary of Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment. His last day is July 31. Assistant Secretary of Economic and Business Affairs Jose Fernandez is also leaving in the near future, according to two sources, which follows The Cable’s report that Chief Economist Heidi Crebo-Rediker will be leaving her position by the end of July.
More broadly, State’s econ team under Clinton restructured the way diplomats work to zealously incentivize the promotion of U.S. business interests. At U.S. embassies around the world, for example, the once lowly duty of acting as a liaison to business interests for State became grounds for a promotion for embassy economic officers.
“You cannot have a strong foreign policy unless you have a strong economy,” Hormats said, summing up the thrust of Clinton’s initiative.
He remained hopeful but uncertain if Clinton’s signature reform would continue under Secretary of State John Kerry given the lack of an immediate successor. “Not knowing that presents a concern,” he said. “I want to make sure that the person who has this job feels as strongly as I do about these issues because I’ve put my heart and soul into it.”
Hormats, former vice chairman of Goldman Sachs, said he wasn’t sure of his next move, but said he’s entertaining offers in “consulting or finance.” Multiple efforts to reach Fernandez, formerly an M&A corporate lawyer at Latham & Watkins, were not successful. Crebo-Rediker, formerly an investment banker and aide for then-Sen John Kerry on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, wouldn’t speculate on her next job.
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