Former Walmart exec confirmed Obama’s budget chief

The Senate has voted unanimously to confirm former Walmart Foundation President Sylvia Mathews Burwell as White House budget director, according to a Reuters report.

The report went on to state that the 96-0 vote marks the first time the White House has had a fully confirmed budget director since January 2012, when Jack Lew, now Treasury Secretary, left the position to become Obama's chief of staff.

“We congratulate Sylvia on her confirmation as director of the Office of Management and Budget. Sylvia understands business and the role that it, along with government and civil society, must play to build a strong economy that provides opportunity and strengthens communities across the country. Perhaps most importantly, she knows how to get things done and has proven time and again that she can deliver strong results, even in especially challenging environments. Sylvia did a great job leading the Walmart Foundation and will do a great job serving our nation in her new role," said Mike Duke, president and CEO of Walmart.

Burwell’s tenure at Walmart was short-lived. She joined the company a little more than a year ago after roughly a decade in various leadership roles with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Prior to that, she held various positions in Washington, D.C., including deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, deputy chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and chief of staff to Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin.

As head of the Office of Management and Budget, Burwell will be responsible for preparing the president’s annual budget.

Prior to her federal government work, Burwell worked for McKinsey & Company. She is a member of the board of the Council on Foreign Relations, the board of MetLife, and the Aspen Strategy Group. She received an A.B. from Harvard University and a B.A. from Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar.

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