Skip to main content

Welcome to Speaking of Dartmouth, a newsletter for alumni and parents. Have something to say about what you read here? Contact us.

Dartmouth alumni in President Barack Obama's administration

Dartmouth alumni serve their country in a variety of roles, from leading diplomatic efforts between the U.S. and North Korea (Stephen Bosworth ’61), to directing communications for the U.S. Department of the Interior (Betsy Hildebrant ’86). The following is a list of alumni who have confirmed appointments in President Barack Obama's administration. Have we missed someone? Let us know.

Note: Additions to the list will be added here:

R. Rand Beers ’64
Position: Undersecretary for the National Protection and Programs Directorate, department of Homeland Security
Undergraduate major: history and German

Rand Beers '64R. Rand Beers ’64 (Photo from Department of Homeland Security)

Beers was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in June to direct the National Protection and Programs Directorate’s integrated efforts to reduce risks to physical, cyber, and communications infrastructures. Beers began his professional career as a Marine officer and rifle company commander in Vietnam, and he served four presidents on the National Security Council staff.

Joseph J. Boswell ’06
Position: Executive assistant, Office of the First Lady
Undergraduate major: government

boswellJoseph J. Boswell ’06 (Photo courtesy Joseph Boswell ’06)

Boswell is the executive assistant to Jackie Norris, First Lady Michelle Obama's chief of staff. "I love working for Mrs. Obama," says Boswell, "and am inspired by her passion and humanity." Boswell joined the Obama campaign in 2007, as a field organizer for the Iowa caucus. He was later named a regional director for the Pennsylvania primary and eventually became a regional field director in Ohio.

Stephen W. Bosworth ’61
Position: Special representative for North Korea policy
Undergraduate major: international relations

bosworthStephen W. Bosworth ’61 (Photo courtesy Tufts University)

Stephen W. Bosworth ’61 is the State Department’s senior official handling North Korean issues. Bosworth is the dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He was the ambassador to South Korea from 1997 to 2000 and was the State Department’s director of policy planning as well as ambassador to the Philippines from 1984 to 1987. He served as chair of the Dartmouth Board of Trustees from 1996 to 1999.

Amanda K. Brown ’07
Position: Assistant to the director of Political Affairs Patrick Gaspard
Undergraduate major: sociology

amanda brownAmanda K. Brown ’07 (Photo courtesy the Rockefeller Center)

As an undergraduate, Brown interned in the office of then-Senator Barack Obama in fall 2005. She began working on his campaign in 2007. Brown says: “Our team is responsible for providing the president with an accurate assessment of the political dynamics affecting the work of his administration; supporting the advancement of his agenda; and ensuring that the White House understands the priorities of, and remains in close contact with, Americans across the nation.”

Steven Dettelbach ’88
Position: U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio
Undergraduate major: government

dettelbachSteven Dettelbach ’88 (Photo: U.S. Attorney's office)

Dettelbach was confirmed on September 15, 2009, for a four-year term. He has served as assistant U.S. attorney and deputy chief in the Southern District of Maryland, and counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. From 1992 to 1997, he was an attorney in the Civil Rights Division, Criminal Section at the Department of Justice—first as a trial attorney and then as acting deputy chief.

David R. Dollar ’76
Position: Economic and financial emissary to China, U.S. Department of the Treasury
Undergraduate major: East Asian studies

David DollarDavid R. Dollar ’76 (Photo: U.S. Treasury Department)

Based in Beijing since 2004, Dollar is country director for China and Mongolia at the World Bank, and was country economist for Vietnam from 1989 to 1995. “David Dollar’s world renowned expertise in development economics and distinguished career at the World Bank will help strengthen the U.S.–China partnership in an economically challenging time,” said Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner ’83, who appointed Dollar on June 1, 2009.

Steven E. Fagell ’95
Position: Deputy chief of staff and counselor to the assistant attorney general, Criminal Division
Undergraduate major: government

steve fagellSteven E. Fagell ’95 (Photo from Covington & Burling, L.L.P.)

In 2008, Fagell was named partner at international firm Convington & Burling, LLP, where he focused on complex commercial litigation, white collar defense, and corporate investigations. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2000 and clerked for Judge Peter Messitte of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland.

Jose W. Fernandez ’77
Position: Assistant secretary of state for Economic, Energy and Business Affairs
Undergraduate major: history

Jose FernandezJose W. Fernandez '77

In this senior position in the State Department, Fernandez will work with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and others to help set economic policy relating to issues such as food security, trade and investment, terrorist financing, energy, and strengthening ties with emerging economies. Following his nomination by President Barack Obama, Fernandez delivered a statement to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on September 15, 2009. He was confirmed on November 20, 2009, at which point he stepped down from the Dartmouth Board of Trustees following seven years of service.

Timothy F. Geithner ’83
Position: Secretary of the Treasury
Undergraduate major: government and Asian studies

geithnerTimothy F. Geithner ’83 (Photo: Getty Images)

The former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Geithner succeeded another Dartmouth alumnus, Henry Paulson Jr. ’68. At Geithner’s swearing-in on January 26, 2009, President Obama told him, "You’ve got your work cut out for you, as I think everybody knows, but you also have my full confidence, my deepest trust, my unyielding belief that we can rise to achieve what is required of us at this moment." In 2006, Geithner received a Nelson Rockefeller Public Service Award from Dartmouth’s Rockefeller Center.

Jodi Archambault Gillette ’91
Position: Deputy associate director, Office of Intergovernmental Affairs
Undergraduate major: government and Native American studies

archambaultJodi Archambault Gillette ’91 (Photo courtesy United Tribes Technical College)

The White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs provides the primary link between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and state, local, and tribal governments. Gillette oversees Indian and tribal affairs. During the presidential campaign, Gillette served as the North Dakota First American vote director. She is an enrolled member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and holds an M.P.A. from the University of Minnesota.

Michelle Greene ’91
Position: Deputy assistant secretary for financial education and financial access at the Treasury Department; member, Council on Women and Girls
Undergraduate major: government

Greene's responsibilities include overseeing policies and programs related to financial education, literacy, capability and access. Her previous experience includes work in the government, private and non-profit sectors. She previously served at the Treasury Department during the Clinton Administration, as a senior policy advisor in financial markets. She received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Robert M. Groves ’70
Position: Census Bureau director
Undergraduate major: sociology

grovesRobert M. Groves ’70 (Photo: U.S. Census Bureau)

Groves’s appointment was approved by the U.S. Senate on July 13, 2009. From 2001 to 2009, he directed the University of Michigan Survey Research Center, Institute for Social Research. He has also previously served as associate director of statistical design, standards, and methodology at the Census Bureau. The author or co-author of six books, he holds an M.A. in statistics and a M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology, all from the University of Michigan.

Betsy Hildebrandt ’86
Position: Director of communications, U.S. Department of the Interior; member, Council on Women and Girls
Undergraduate major: history

betsy hildebrandt 86Betsy J. Hildebrandt ’86 (Photo: Betsy Hildebrandt ’86)

Hildebrandt has marketing experience at Accenture, Greer, Margolis Mitchell Burns, and Fenn and King Communications. She has also served as a legislative assistant to Rep. Les AuCoin (D-Ore). She says that her history classes at Dartmouth "triggered a lifelong interest and curiosity in where we've been as a country and how that impacts the here and now."

Jeffrey R. Immelt ’78
Position: Member of the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board
Undergraduate major: applied mathematics and economics

jeff immeltJeffrey R. Immelt ’78 (Photo: General Electric)

CEO of GE since 2001 and a Dartmouth trustee, Immelt was invited to serve on a 16-member Economic Advisory Board established by President Obama on February 6, 2009. Immelt is on the board of the New York Federal Reserve Bank and has been named three times as one of the "World's Best CEOs" by Barron’s. He holds an MBA from Harvard University and received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Dartmouth in 2004 when he served as Commencement speaker.

Abdul K. Kallon ’90
Position: U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Alabama
Undergraduate major: African and African American Studies

kallonAbdul K. Kallon ’90 (Photo: Bradley Arant Boult Cummings)

Kallon was confirmed for this lifetime appointment by the US Senate on November 21, 2009. He is a partner at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings in Birmingham, Alabama, where he practices labor and employment law. “He will serve as a glittering role model for young lawyers,” says Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala).

Neal K. Katyal ’91
Position: Principal deputy Solicitor General
Undergraduate major: government modified with Asian studies

katyalNeal K. Katyal ’91 (Photo by David Deal)

President Obama appointed Katyal to the second highest position in the Office of the Solicitor General, which conducts government litigation in the U.S. Supreme Court. Katyal is a professor of law at Georgetown University. In 2007 he won Hamdan v. Rumsfeld in the United States Supreme Court, a case that challenged the policy of military trials at Guantanamo Bay Naval Station, Cuba. Katyal earned his J.D. from Yale Law School.

Karen Loeffler ’79
Position: U.S. Attorney, District of Alaska
Undergraduate major: government

loefflerKaren Loeffler ’79 (Photo: Dartmouth Alumni Magazine)

Loeffler was sworn in as the first female U.S. attorney for Alaska on October 16. She had been an assistant United States attorney for the District of Alaska for 20 years. From 1983 to 1985, she was a litigation associate at Faegre & Benson in Minneapolis, Minn. In Anchorage, Loeffler has served on the board of directors of the Anchorage Ski Club and the park commission. She is a graduate of Harvard Law School.

David G. Loevinger ’84
Position: Executive secretary and senior coordinator for China affairs and the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, U.S. Department of the Treasury
Undergraduate major: government modified with economics

loevingerDavid G. Loevinger ’84 (Photo: U.S. Treasury Department)

At the time of his appointment, Loevinger was minister-counselor for financial affairs in China, the Treasury's first permanent representative in China. He was previously treasury deputy assistant secretary for Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Announcing the appointment, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner ’83 said, "David Loevinger and David Dollar [Class of 1976, see above] are both uniquely qualified to serve in these roles because of their deep expertise and extended experience in handling a broad array of U.S.–China economic affairs.”

William J. Lynn ’76
Position: Deputy Secretary of Defense
Undergraduate major: history

lynnWilliam Lynn ’76 (Photo: Department of Defense)

The 30th Deputy Secretary of Defense, Lynn has worked for the Department of Defense since 1993. Prior to that, he served for six years on the staff of the late Senator Edward Kennedy as liaison to the Senate Armed Services Committee. He was a senior fellow at the National Defense University and was on the professional staff of the Institute for Defense Analyses. Lynn also served as senior vice president of government operations and strategy at Raytheon Company.

Gregorio Millett '90
Position: Senior policy advisor, Office of National AIDS Policy
Undergraduate major: sociology

Millett, a detailee from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), coordinates the Office's policy and research activities, including HIV prevention policy. He is the staff lead for the HIV interagency working group that is tasked with developing the national HIV/AIDS strategy. Millett also served as a lecturer of lesbian and gay health at the Duke University and Bowman Gray schools of medicine.

James F. Moriarty ’75
Position: U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh
Undergraduate major: history

moriartyJames Moriarty ’75 (Photo: State Department)

Nominated by President George W. Bush, Moriarty was sworn in on March 26, 2008. Prior to this assignment, Moriarty served as U.S. Ambassador to Nepal between 2004 and 2007 and as Special Assistant to the President from 2002-2004. Ambassador Moriarty also worked in the White House in 2001-2002 as National Security Council Director for China Affairs. He speaks Chinese, Nepali, Urdu, French and Bangla.

Mara E. Rudman ’84
Position: Deputy envoy/chief of staff to Special Envoy for Middle East Peace George Mitchell
Undergraduate major:

rudmanMara E. Rudman ’84 (Photo: The Boston Globe / Ralph Alswang)

Rudman previously served deputy assistant to the president for national security affairs and chief of staff for the National Security Council under President Bill Clinton. She was also minority chief counsel to the House Committee on International Relations from 1995 to 1997 and in 1999. She holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Cathy Green Solomon '82
Position: Advisor for Recovery Act Implementation, Office of the Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Education
Undergraduate major: mathematics and social sciences

Cathy Solomon helps track the nearly $100 billion in Recovery Act funding by overseeing the transparency and accountability requirements in the U.S. Department of Education. She also worked in the private sector for many years, managing brands including Life Cereal and Quaker Oat Bran at the Quaker Oats Company. As an undergraduate, she served as Managing Editor of The Dartmouth.

Todd D. Stern ’73
Special Envoy for Climate Change
Undergraduate major:
English and philosophy

sternTodd D. Stern ’73 (Photo: Todd Stern ’73)

A staff secretary to President Bill Clinton, Stern also served that administration as a senior climate negotiator, representing the United States at the United Nations climate conferences in Kyoto and Buenos Aires. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a partner and vice chair of the Public Policy and Strategy Group at the law firm WilmerHale. Stern received his J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Paul Stockton ’76
Position: Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense and America’s Security Affairs
Undergraduate major:

stocktonPaul Stockton ’76 (Photo: Juan R. Tricoche, U.S. Army)

Prior to his appointment on June 1, 2009, Stockton was a senior research scholar at Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation. He has also served as associate provost at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California and as director of the school’s Center for Civil-Military Relations.

Brian P. Sylvester ’05
Position: Attorney-Advisor, U.S. Department of Agriculture
Undergraduate major:
psychological and brain sciences

sylvesterBrian P. Sylvester ’05 (Photo: Brian Sylvester '05)

In the department's office of general counsel, Sylvester helps facilitate fair and competitive trading practices by providing legal counsel to the Regulatory and Marketing agencies. He was appointed on August 31, 2009. Sylvester studied international law at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and is a 2008 graduate of Cornell Law School.

Hilary Tompkins ’90
Position: Solicitor of the Department of the Interior
Undergraduate major:

tompkinsHilary C. Tompkins ’90 (Photo: U.S. Department of Interior)

As solicitor, Tompkins is the chief general counsel for the Department of the Interior and represents the department in administrative and judicial litigation and meetings, negotiations, and other contracts with Congress, federal agencies, states, tribes and the public. Tompkins was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 17, 2009.

Benjamin Wagner '82
Position: U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California
Undergraduate majors:
history and government

wagnerBenjamin Wagner '82 (Photo: Department of Justice)

Wagner joined the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of California in 1992, and most recently served as chief of the special prosecutions unit. He has also held leadership positions, including coordinator of a task force on violence against abortion providers, and coordinator of the prevention of violence against women initiative. He was confirmed on November 5, 2009, for a term of four years.

Cathy Zoi, Thayer ’85
Position: Assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy, Department of Energy
Dartmouth degree: Master of science in engineering

zoiCathy Zoi, Thayer '85 (Photo courtesy U.S. Department of Energy)

Zoi joined the Alliance for Climate Protection as founding CEO in 2007. The Alliance is a nonprofit organization leading a multiyear, multimillion dollar effort “aimed at persuading Americans of both the urgency and solvability of global warming.” Zoi also served as chief of staff in the White House Office on Environmental Policy in the Clinton administration. She was confirmed on June 19, 2009.

Last Updated: 7/25/18