The Washington Post

Commerce Secretary John Bryson’s memo to employees explaining his medical leave of absence

Commerce Secretary John Bryson. (Brendan Smialowski/GETTY IMAGES)

Bryson sent the following message to Commerce Department employees. Read the memo below, as obtained from department officials:

Dear Commerce Team,

This evening, I notified Deputy Secretary Rebecca Blank that I am taking a medical leave of absence in order to focus on resolving my health issues that arose over the weekend.

During this time, I will not perform the functions and duties of Commerce Secretary. Therefore, I am transferring these responsibilities to Dr. Blank who will serve as Acting Secretary, effective immediately.

As you know, Dr. Blank has strengthened our Department in this role before. I have every confidence in her.

I know that all of you will work to make this a seamless transition, and I thank you in advance for your continued work to help America’s businesses drive economic growth and job creation at this crucial moment in our nation’s recovery.

Finally, I want to thank all of you personally for your warm thoughts and support.


John Bryson

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Ed O’Keefe is covering the 2016 presidential campaign, with a focus on Jeb Bush and other Republican candidates. He's covered presidential and congressional politics since 2008. Off the trail, he's covered Capitol Hill, federal agencies and the federal workforce, and spent a brief time covering the war in Iraq.


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