Back in October, when President Obama tapped Ron Klain to coordinate the U.S. response to the  frightening Ebola outbreak, many observers — you know who you are — were outraged that the White House had picked a lawyer and former chief of staff to Vice President Biden for the job — as opposed to a doctor or nationally known figure.

Obama noted as much in his farewell statement: “There was more than a little skepticism from some corners at the selection of Ron to fulfill this function.” He called it “background noise.”

As this paper recently reported, Klain has gotten high marks from public-health experts and others for his oversight of the complex effort to battle the disease. As he leaves his office Thursday, only two people died of the disease in this country — and both of them had contracted Ebola overseas.

So Klain could be considered the most effective czar since the end of the Romanov era in Russia.