Who Is Denis McDonough? Obama To Appoint Him Chief Of Staff

 @LauraMatt on January 25 2013 11:06 AM

President Barack Obama will be shuffling more familiar, trusted faces to new positions within the White House, as reports surface that longtime aide Denis McDonough will be named the new chief of staff.

An announcement is expected around noon Friday along with other West Wing shake-ups that could include Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer being promoted to senior adviser, and Deputy Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri taking Pfeiffer’s old job.

McDonough will be replacing current Chief of Staff Jack Lew, who Obama nominated to be the next secretary of the treasury.

Two years ago, McDonough, 43, was appointed assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser. In October 2010, Obama said he counted on McDonough’s expertise on national security issues for years.

“He possesses a remarkable intellect, irrepressible work ethic and a sense of collegiality that has earned him the respect of his colleagues,” Obama said at the time, calling McDonough “indispensable.”

The Obama-McDonough relationship dates back even further to the 2008 campaign, during which McDonough counseled the president on foreign policy issues.

According to White House information, McDonough served as chief of staff of the National Security Staff from September 2009. Before that, he served as deputy national security adviser for strategic communications. And before his role as senior adviser on foreign policy issues for the Obama 2008 campaign, McDonough was a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress.

Among McDonough’s congressional roles is foreign policy adviser for former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle.

McDonough, a native of Stillwater, Minn., is a St. John’s University graduate and holds a master’s from Georgetown University.

According to USA Today, here are the other expected new appointees:

-- Rob Nabors - Deputy White House Chief of Staff for Policy

-- Tony Blinken - Taking McDonough's old job as Deputy National Security Adviser

-- Danielle Gray - Cabinet Secretary

-- Katy Kale - Assistant to the President for Management and Administration

-- Lisa Monaco - Deputy National Security Adviser for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. This is dependent on John Brennan being confirmed as director of the CIA. Brennan’s confirmation hearing in the Senate is set for next month.

-- Jennifer Palmieri - Communications Director

-- Dan Pfeiffer - Senior Adviser to the President

-- Miguel Rodriguez - Director of Legislative Affairs

-- David Simas - Deputy Senior Adviser for Communications and Strategy

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