(Reuters) - Republican U.S. President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday named the first women to his team of top officials: South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley for U.N. ambassador, and school choice advocate Betsy DeVos for education secretary.
The following are details about his selections so far. All but the national security adviser post require U.S. Senate confirmation:
U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS: GOVERNOR NIKKI HALEY
Haley, a 44-year-old Republican and the daughter of Indian immigrants, has been governor of South Carolina since 2011 and has little experience in foreign policy or the federal government. She led a successful push last year to remove the Confederate battle flag from the grounds of the South Carolina state capitol after the killing of nine black churchgoers in Charleston by a white gunman.
EDUCATION SECRETARY: BETSY DEVOS
DeVos, 58, is a billionaire Republican donor, a former chair of the Michigan Republican Party and an advocate for the privatization of education. As chair of the American Federation for Children, she has pushed at the state level for vouchers that families can use to send their children to private schools and for the expansion of charter schools.
U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: U.S. SENATOR JEFF SESSIONS
Sessions, 69, was the first U.S. senator to endorse Trump’s presidential bid and has been a close ally since. The son of a country-store owner, the senator from Alabama and former federal prosecutor has long taken a tough stance on illegal immigration, opposing any path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: RETIRED LIEUTENANT GENERAL MICHAEL FLYNN
Flynn, 57, was an early supporter of Trump and serves as vice chairman on his transition team. He began his U.S. Army career in 1981 and served deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq. Flynn became head of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2012 under President Barack Obama, but retired a year earlier than expected, according to media reports, and became a fierce critic of Obama’s foreign policy.
CIA DIRECTOR: U.S. REPRESENTATIVE MIKE POMPEO
Pompeo, 52, is a third-term congressman from Kansas who serves on the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, which oversees the CIA, National Security Agency and cyber security. A retired Army officer, West Point and Harvard Law School graduate, Pompeo supports the U.S. government’s sweeping collection of Americans’ communications data and wants to scrap the nuclear deal with Iran.
Reporting by Susan Heavey and Doina Chiacu in Washington; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and Peter Cooney
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