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Biden Admin. nominates former Gov. Jack Markell to economic ambassador role

Delaware Public Media

The Biden Administration taps former Delaware Gov. Jack Markell to serve as U.S. Ambassador to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

The global economic organization has 37 member countries, it was founded in 1961 and it is headquartered in Paris, France.

Markell’s nomination to serve as top diplomat to OECD still requires approval from the U.S. Senate. 

“I’m obviously really honored that [President Biden] has nominated me to the position,” said Markell. “To have his confidence is a big deal, and I’ll certainly do everything I can, if I’m confirmed by the Senate, to live up to his expectations and the country’s expectations.”       

Markell, a Democrat, was governor from 2009 to 2017 and before that was Delaware's state treasurer. He is now president of his own consulting firm and a former Senior Vice President of Comcast Corporation and Nextel Communications.

Markell says he’s excited at the prospect of the new job. 

“We live, obviously, in a very interconnected world and to the extent that we can learn things from other countries that may be doing something particularly well, for example, in the area of apprenticeships,” he said. “Or that we can share what we do well with others around the world, it’s a win-win and that’s what this is supposed to be about.”

The nomination has been praised by local and statewide officials, including Sen. Tom Carper, who cited Markell’s work as governor navigating the state through the 2008 recession as an example of his qualifications for the post.

“Jack put in place policies and made investments that helped the First State become a more nurturing environment for job creation and job preservation,” said Carper in a statement.

The nomination also found applause from New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer, who served in the Markell administration as an economic advisor.

“While serving under Gov. Markell … I learned invaluable lessons about Delaware’s place in the national and world economy,” said Meyer.

Markell says he will continue to call Delaware home if he is confirmed.

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