Biden Taps RI Gov. Raimondo for Commerce, Boston Mayor Walsh for Labor

By John O. Harney

Comings and Goings …



President-elect Joe Biden nominated Rhode Island Gov. Gina M. Raimondo as the next U.S. secretary of commerce and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh as the next U.S. secretary of labor.

Raimondo, who chaired NEBHE’s Commission of Higher Education & Employability, will be succeeded in Rhode Island by Lieutenant Gov. Daniel J. McKee, who earned a NEBHE Excellence Award in 2010 while mayor of Cumberland, R.I.

In Boston, Walsh will be succeeded by Boston City Council President Kim Janey on an interim basis, who becomes the first Black and first woman mayor of New England’s largest city.

Last week, we reported that Biden chose Connecticut Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona to be the next U.S. education secretary, succeeding Betsy DeVos, the champion of private schools who served as secretary since the beginning of the Trump administration. Now, DeVos has submitted her resignation, citing Trump’s latest attempt to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power and the resulting insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Back in New England, the Rhode Island Council on Postsecondary Education and the Rhode Island Board of Education appointed Shannon Gilkey as Rhode Island Commissioner on Postsecondary Education, effective Feb 1. Gilkey served as vice chancellor of academics and workforce development at the Kentucky Community and Technical College System and senior policy advisor for economic and workforce development for the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.

The University of Massachusetts announced that UMass Amherst Vice Chancellor for Advancement, Mark Fuller, who is the former dean of UMass Amherst’s Isenberg School of Management, will become interim chancellor of UMass Dartmouth on Jan. 19. Theresa Curry, associate vice chancellor for development and executive director of gift planning at UMass Amherst, will become interim vice chancellor for advancement.


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