The Washington Post

Obama names top donors, career diplomats to ambassadorial posts


As expected, HBO executive James Costos is Obama’s pick to be our man in Madrid. He, along with his partner, famed interior decorator Michael Smith, raised millions for the reelection. Rufus Gifford, former Democratic National Committee finance chairman and Obama’s 2012 fundraising director, got the nod for Denmark we were anticipating.

And Germany’s the destination (again, as expected) for John Emerson, Capitol Group exec, former Clinton White House aide and in recent years a Los Angeles mega-fundraiser for Democrats and Obama.

Obama also named Ken Hackett, a consultant to the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Global Development and a longtime head of the Catholic Relief Services, to the Vatican.

Here’s the full list:

•Liliana Ayalde — Ambassador to the Federative Republic of Brazil, Department of State

•James Costos — Ambassador to Spain, Department of State

•John B. Emerson — Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, Department of State

•Rufus Gifford — Ambassador to Denmark, Department of State

•Ken Hackett — Ambassador to the Holy See, Department of State

•Patricia Marie Haslach — Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Department of State

Ayalde and Haslach are both career diplomats.

Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.


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