Obama was expected to announce his latest Cabinet shuffle at the
White House on Friday afternoon, a White House official said,
shortly after he returns from an overnight trip to his Chicago
hometown to raise money for Senate Democratic candidates.
He was to be joined by Castro and Donovan, two men both close to
the president and whose profiles would receive a significant
boost from moving into the higher-profile positions. The White
House official who disclosed the nominations would speak only on
condition of anonymity before a pending personnel announcement
Obama chose Castro to deliver the keynote address at the 2012
Democratic National Convention and his star has been rising ever
since. The two men's life stories are similar: Both are
minorities raised by single mothers, they hold Harvard law
degrees and saw their political careers skyrocket after giving
lauded Democratic convention keynote speeches.
Castro, 39, is often among those being talked about as possible
Democratic vice presidential candidates in 2016. If confirmed by
the Senate, the three-term mayor would become one of the
highest-ranking Latino officials serving at the pleasure of the
Shaun Donovan, 48, is highly regarded inside the White House as
a strong manager. He is a lifelong affordable housing advocate
whose work overseeing the federal government's response to the
destruction Hurricane Sandy unleashed on the East Coast in
October 2012 has earned glowing praise from White House
officials, including Obama.
As director of the White House Office of Management and Budget,
currently a Cabinet-level post, Donovan would have influence
over administration policy and spending. He would be expected to
win Senate confirmation a second time for the new post.
Donovan would replace Sylvia Mathews Burwell. Obama
recently nominated Burwell to become secretary of health and
human services following the resignation of Kathleen Sebelius
after the disastrous rollout of the federal website for
consumers to buy insurance coverage under Obama's health care
Obama had sought to bring Castro into the administration in the
past, but he decided to stay in the job he says he looked
forward to while growing up. Castro handily won a third term as
mayor last year.
But his ambitions apparently have grown along with his stock as
a politician with broad appeal to Democratic voters, including
fellow Latinos who voted overwhelmingly for Obama in 2012.
Castro is Mexican-American.
Serving in Obama's Cabinet would give Castro a national platform
to continue building his reputation.
president and chief executive officer of the U.S. Hispanic
Chamber of Commerce, said Castro is a ``visionary leader''
who has done more than anyone in San Antonio to address the
city's housing needs.
``Mayor Castro is not only an exemplary leader within the
Hispanic community, but by all measure, a well-suited candidate
to lead the department,'' Palomarez said. ``With great
consistency, Mayor Castro has set aside political partisanship
in the name of good policy decision making. We hope his
confirmation process will proceed with that same collaborative