US President-elect Joe Biden is set to announce Nigerian-born attorney Adewale Adeyemo, as deputy Treasury secretary, according to various reports.
Adeyemo, who was a former senior international economic adviser during the Obama administration, will serve under former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who Biden plans to appoint to lead the US Treasury Department.
This will be the highest level a Nigerian-American has reached in the US Government.
The 39-year-old Adeyemo’s appointment is one of many key cabinet positions Biden is expected to announce in the coming days.
Born in Nigeria, Adeyemo was raised in California where he obtained a Bachelor’s degree before proceeding to Yale Law School for his legal education.
Before his appointment into the Obama administration, Adeyemo worked as an editor at the Hamilton Project, then served as Senior Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff to Jack Lew in the United States Department of Treasury.
He later worked as the chief negotiator for the Trans-Pacific Partnership and also served as the first chief of staff of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under Elizabeth Warren.
In 2015, he was appointed to concurrently serve as Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economics and deputy director of the National Economic Council.
Known fondly by peers and associates as ‘Wally’ Adeyemo has spent his career working with organizations that are at the intersection of public policy, the private sector, and nonprofits that are focused on creating economic opportunity.
He serves as president at the Obama Foundation and provides advice on business strategy, macroeconomic policy, and geopolitics to the CSIS Economics Program.
He also advises policymakers, business leaders, and nonprofits on a range of topics including economic development, trade and investment, and on strategies to address economic inequality.
Appointed as deputy national security advisor and deputy director of the National Economic Council by President Obama in 2015, Wally served as the president’s senior international economic advisor.
He was responsible for coordinating the policymaking process on international finance, trade and investment, energy, and environmental issues. He also served as the president’s representative to the G7 and G20.
Prior to this, Wally held several management positions at the US Department of the Treasury, including senior adviser and deputy chief of staff, as well as chief negotiator for the Trans-Pacific Partnership’s provisions on macroeconomic policy.
Wally also served as the first chief of staff at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. In that capacity, he helped to hire the bureau’s initial executive leadership team and build an agency devoted to protecting US consumers.
Adeyemo is now a member of several boards and organizations including the Aspen Strategy Group, the board of Demos, and the board of the Golden State Opportunity Foundation.
Raised east of Los Angeles, California, he is a graduate of University of California, Berkeley and Yale Law School.