President Barack Obama is nominating Maria Echaveste, a former Clinton White House official, to be next ambassador to Mexico. If confirmed, she would be the first woman in that post, as White House Domestic Policy Director Cecilia Muñoz tweeted.
The White House announced the nomination Thursday saying "while Echaveste has been actively involved in the effort to pass sensible immigration reform, she understands that the relationship between the United States and Mexico goes well beyond issues of immigration reform, including critical trade and commerce alliances."
Mexico is the U.S.'s third largest trading partner with $507 billion in good traded both ways between the two countries, according to the Office of U.S. Trade Representative.
Echaveste is the policy and program development director at the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy at the University of California's Berkely Law School. In the private sector, she co-founded a strategic and policy group, NVG.
She served as assistant to the president and deputy chief of staff to former President Bill Clinton from 1988 to 2001 and was administrator of the wage and hour division of the Department of Labor.
She is a 1976 graduate of Stanford and earned a law degree in 1980 at Berkeley.