The White House

Office of the Press Secretary


President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key Administration posts:

  • Anne C. Richard - Assistant Secretary for Population, Refugees and Migration, Department of State
  • Tara D. Sonenshine - Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, Department of State

The President also announced his intent to appoint the following individuals to key administration posts:

  • Julie Ann Petty - Member, President's Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities
  • Lauren Elizabeth Potter - Member, President's Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities

President Obama said, “I am grateful that these talented and dedicated individuals have agreed to take on these important roles and devote their talents to serving the American people.  I look forward to working with them in the coming months and years.”

President Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key Administration posts:

Anne C. Richard, Nominee for Assistant Secretary for Population, Refugees and Migration, Department of State
Anne C. Richard is the Vice President of Government Relations and Advocacy for the International Rescue Committee (IRC).  Prior to joining IRC in 2004, Ms. Richard was Director of the Office of Resources, Plans and Policy at the Department of State from 1999 to 2001.  From 1997 to 1999, she was Deputy Chief Financial Officer of the Peace Corps.  She has also served as a budget and policy advisor at the Department of State and as Budget Examiner at the United States Office of Management and Budget.  Ms. Richard was an International Affairs Fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations from 1993 to 1994 and was part of the team that created the International Crisis Group.  From 1985 to 1986, she was a fellow of the Robert Bosch Foundation in Germany.  She received a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an M.A. in Public Policy Studies from the University of Chicago.

Tara D. Sonenshine, Nominee for Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, Department of State
Tara D. Sonenshine is the Executive Vice President of the United States Institute of Peace (USIP).  Prior to joining USIP, she was a strategic communications adviser to many international organizations including USIP, the International Crisis Group, Internews, CARE, The American Academy of Diplomacy, and the International Women’s Media Foundation. Ms. Sonenshine served in various capacities at the White House during the Clinton Administration, including Transition Director, Director of Foreign Policy Planning for the National Security Council, and Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Communications.   Prior to serving in the Clinton Administration, Ms. Sonenshine was an Editorial Producer of ABC News’ Nightline, where she worked for more than a decade.  She was also an off-air reporter at the Pentagon for ABC’s World News Tonight and is the recipient of 10 News Emmy Awards for coverage of international affairs.  She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Tufts University.

President Obama announced his intent to appoint the following individuals to  key Administration posts:

Lauren Elizabeth Potter, Appointee for Member, President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities
Lauren Elizabeth Potter is a cast member on the FOX television program Glee where she plays the part of Becky Jackson.  Ms. Potter also serves on the Board of Best Buddies International, has participated in the Abilitypath.org campaign against bullying, partnered with the Special Olympics in their “End the Word” campaign, and is currently lending her name and fame to numerous organizations, including the Down Syndrome Association and the American Association of People with Disabilities.  Her disability rights advocacy has earned her awards from The Down Syndrome Association of Los Angeles, the Arc, and the Full Life Festival.  Ms. Potter is a graduate of Polytechnic High School in Riverside, California and she is currently a student at Irvine Valley College.

Julie Ann Petty, Appointee for Member, President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities
Julie Ann Petty is a project trainer for Partners for Inclusive Communities at the Arkansas University Center on Disabilities.  Ms. Petty’s work at the Center on Disabilities focuses on educating those with intellectual disabilities on health and safety.  She is also co-chair of the Alliance for Full Participation, a nationwide coalition of self-advocacy disability organizations.  Previously, Ms. Petty served as state coordinator for Arkansas People First (1998-2007), national chairperson of Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (2006-2008), and a policy analyst for the Human Service Research Institute (2007 – 2009).  Ms. Petty received her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Arkansas.