President Joe Biden appointed additional Boston College alumni to the Biden-Harris administration in early January. Biden selected Evan Ryan, BC ’93, to serve as White House Cabinet secretary in the Office of Cabinet Affairs and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, BC ’09, to serve as secretary of labor in his cabinet.
Prior to this appointment, according to White House archives, Ryan worked from 2003 to 2004 as a deputy director of communications on John Kerry’s presidential campaign, who was appointed in November 2020 as the special presidential envoy for climate. Additionally, Ryan worked as deputy campaign manager for Biden’s presidential campaign in 2008, according to the archives.
In the Obama administration, Ryan served as assistant to the vice president and special assistant to the president for intergovernmental affairs and public engagement from 2009 to 2013, according to the archives. She was then nominated and eventually served as the assistant secretary of state for Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) from 2013 to 2017.
She served as executive vice president for Axios from 2017 to 2020, according to her LinkedIn. Most recently, she served as a senior advisor on the Biden-Harris transition team.
The Office of Cabinet Affairs, where Ryan will serve as cabinet secretary, is responsible for coordinating communications and policy between the White House and the cabinet, in addition to managing various issues regarding federal agencies, according to archives from the White House website.
“President Biden’s Cabinet reflects his pledge to appoint leaders of government agencies that reflect the country they aim to serve,” the White House website said.
Ryan is married to Antony Blinken, who was sworn in on Jan. 26 as the 71st secretary of state, according to the Department of State website. Blinken and Ryan have formed a close relationship with Biden, according to CNN, with Blinken having worked alongside Biden for almost 20 years.
“My family—especially my wife [Evan Ryan] and our children, John and Lila— is my greatest blessing,” Blinken said in his opening remarks on Jan. 19, then serving as secretary of state-designate. “Our tradition of public service is a source of tremendous pride.”
Walsh, who was tapped as secretary of labor on Jan. 7., has a long-standing relationship with Biden, according to an article from The Boston Globe.
Pending Walsh’s Senate confirmation, Boston City Council President Kim Janey will serve as acting mayor of Boston according to an article from The Boston Globe. If Walsh leaves office before March 5, the city council will hold a special election 120 to 140 days following his departure. If he leaves after March 5, Janey will serve as mayor until the next election in November.
“Working people, labor unions, and those fighting every day for their shot at the middle class are the backbone of our economy and of this country,” Walsh said in a tweet on Jan. 7. “As Secretary of Labor, I’ll work just as hard for you as you do for your families and livelihoods. You have my word.”
Featured Image by Maddy Romance / Heights Editor