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Ron Klain

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Title: Ron Klain  
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Ron Klain

Ron Klain
Ebola Response Coordinator for the Executive Office of the President
Assumed office
October 22, 2014
President Barack Obama
Preceded by Position established
Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United States
In office
January 20, 2009 – January 14, 2011
Vice President Joe Biden
Preceded by David Addington
Succeeded by Bruce Reed
In office
Vice President Al Gore
Preceded by Jack Quinn
Succeeded by Charles Burson
Personal details
Born (1961-08-08) August 8, 1961
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Monica Medina
Children 3
Alma mater Georgetown University
Harvard University

Ronald A. "Ron" Klain (born August 8, 1961) is an American lawyer who on October 17, 2014, was named for the newly created position of "Ebola response coordinator" or, less officially, Ebola Czar. He served as Chief of Staff to two Vice presidents – Al Gore (1995–99) and Joseph Biden (2009–11).

Early life

Klain was born on August 8, 1961 in Harvard Law School.


Capitol Hill

Klain was a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Byron White during the 1987 and 1988 terms. From 1989 to 1992, he served as Chief Counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, overseeing the legal staff's work on matters of constitutional law, criminal law, antitrust law, and Supreme Court nominations, including the 1991 Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination. He served as Legislative Director for U.S. Representative Ed Markey (D-MA). In 1995, Senator Tom Daschle appointed him the Staff Director of the Senate Democratic Leadership Committee.

Clinton administration

Klain joined the Clinton-Gore campaign in 1992 and was involved in both of Bill Clinton's campaigns.He oversaw Clinton's judicial nominations, and was General Counsel to Al Gore's recount committee in 2000 election. Klain worked closely with Clinton aide Bruce Reed in formulating Clinton's "100,000 cops" proposal of his 1992 campaign. In the White House, Klain was Associate Counsel to the President, directing judicial selection efforts, and led the team that won confirmation of Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. In 1994 he became Chief of Staff and Counselor to Attorney General Janet Reno and in 1995 Assistant to the President, and Chief of Staff to Al Gore.

Gore campaign 1999-2000

During Klain's tenure as Gore's Chief of Staff he was seen as too loyal to Clinton by some longtime Gore advisors and in 1999 feuding broke out between Clinton and Gore loyalists in 1999. Klain was ousted by Gore campaign chairman Tony Coelho in August 1999. In October 1999, he joined the Washington, D.C. office of the law firm of O'Melveny & Myers. In 2000, Klain returned to the Gore campaign, once Coelho was replaced by William M. Daley who hired Klain for a senior position in the Gore campaign and then named him General Counsel of Gore's Recount Committee.


Klain was signed up as a lobbyist for Fannie Mae until 2005 whom he helped overcome "regulatory issues".[2]


During the 2004 US presidential campaign early primaries, Klain worked as an adviser to Wesley Clark. During the general election, Klain was heavily involved behind the scenes in John Kerry's campaign.[3]

Klain served as an informal adviser to Evan Bayh, who is from Klain's home state of Indiana. In 2005, Klain left his partnership at O'Melveny & Myers to become Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Revolution LLC, a technology venture capital firm, launched by AOL co-founder Steve Case. . As of October 2014 he is General Counsel at Revolution LLC and President of Case Holdings.[4]

Obama administration 2008-present

On November 12, 2008, Roll Call announced that Klain had been chosen to serve as Chief of Staff to Vice President Joe Biden, the same role he served for Gore.[5][6][7]

Klain had worked with Biden previously, having served as counsel to the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary while Biden chaired that committee and assisted Biden's speechwriting team during the 1988 presidential campaign.[8]

Klain was mentioned as a possible replacement for White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel,[9] but opted to leave the White House for a position in the private sector in January 2011.[7]

In 2011, amid concerns about whether the now-defunct solar-panel company Solyndra was viable, Klain approved an Obama visit, stating, "The reality is that if POTUS visited 10 such places over the next 10 months, probably a few will be belly-up by election day 2012."[10]

On October 17, 2014, Klain was appointed the "Ebola response coordinator" or, less officially, Ebola "czar"[4] by President Obama, to help coordinate the nation's response to the Ebola virus.[4][11][12][13] His appointment has been criticized because he "has no record or expertise in Ebola specifically or public health in general".[12]

Media opinion lists and TV coverage

In 1994, Time named Klain one of the "50 most promising leaders in America" under the age of 40. In 1999, Washingtonian magazine named him the top lawyer in Washington under the age of 40, and the American Bar Association's Barrister magazine named him one of the top 20 young lawyers nationwide. The National Law Journal named him one of its Lawyers of the Year for 2000. Klain has commented on matters of law and policy on televised programs such as the Today Show, Good Morning America, Nightline, Capital Report, NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and Crossfire.

Personal life

Klain and his wife, Monica Medina, a lawyer and environmental activist, who serves as Principal Deputy Undersecretary for Oceans and Atmosphere, have three children.[14]

In popular culture

Klain was portrayed by Kevin Spacey in the HBO film Recount depicting the tumult of the 2000 presidential election.[6]

See also


  1. ^ Jewish Daily Forward: "Obama Appoints Ron Klain as Ebola 'Czar' - Former White House Official Is a Top Jewish Lawyer October 17, 2014
  2. ^ Mosk, Matthew (November 15, 2008). "Some Former Lobbyists Have Key Roles in Obama Transition".  
  3. ^ Martin Kasendorf and Richard Benedetto (September 27, 2004). "Kerry, Bush Curtail Schedules as They Prepare for Duel".  
  4. ^ a b c Kuhnhenn, Jim (October 17, 2014). "'"President Obama appoints Ebola 'czar.  
  5. ^ Koffler, Keith (November 12, 2008). "Sources: Biden Picks Klain to Be Chief of Staff". Roll Call; accessed October 18, 2014.
  6. ^ a b Allen, Mike (November 13, 2008). "Klain accepts job as Biden chief of staff". Politico.
  7. ^ a b Cooper, Helene C. (January 4, 2011). "Ron Klain Leaving Vice President's Staff".  
  8. ^ Cramer, Richard Ben (1992).   p. 482.
  9. ^ Henry, Ed (September 8, 2010). "Who might replace Rahm Emanuel?".  
  10. ^ Madhani, Aamer (October 3, 2011). "E-mails show White House worried about Solyndra deal". USA Today. Retrieved September 28, 2012. 
  11. ^ Jake Tapper (October 17, 2014). "Obama will name Ron Klain as Ebola czar". CNN. Retrieved October 18, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Davis, Julie Hirschfeld; Shear, Michael D. (October 17, 2014). "Ron Klain, Chief of Staff to 2 Vice Presidents, Is Named Ebola Czar".  
  13. ^ Lavender, Paige (October 17, 2014). "Obama To Appoint Ron Klain As Ebola Czar".  
  14. ^ "NOAA Leadership: Monica Medina". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website; retrieved August 14, 2013.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Jack Quinn
Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United States
Succeeded by
Charles Burson
Preceded by
David Addington
Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United States
Succeeded by
Bruce Reed
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