Shalanda Young is preparing to make history as the first Black woman to head the federal budget office, KTBS reports.
A Baton Rouge, Louisiana native, Young holds a bachelor's degree from Loyola University and a master’s degree from Tulane University. In 2001, she began her career in politics, moving to Washington, D.C. to serve as a Presidential Management Fellow with the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Following her time at NIH, she went on to become a staffer in the U.S. House Appropriations Committee before becoming staff director and clerk. There, she oversaw the $1.3 trillion annual appropriations bills, necessary disaster aid and was instrumental in a number of COVID-19 related spending.
In March, the U.S. Senate confirmed Young as deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget in a bipartisan 63-37 vote. Young was then sworn in to the position in a ceremony by Vice President Kamala Harris. Now, Young has been nominated by President Biden to lead the federal budget office as director, where she would make history as the first Black woman to ever hold the title if confirmed again by the Senate.
In a video announcement, Biden praised Young, saying, “She has continued to impress me, and congressional leaders as well,” The Miami Times reports.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also gave her support, calling Young’s nomination “well-deserved,” while Sen. John Tester, D-Mont. said it was a “good call.”
“[Young’s] leadership is just what we need to implement a federal budget that prioritizes the American people,” Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md. added.
In her new role Young will act as a senior advisor to Biden, helping to implement the president's plans and utilize legislation to improve the nation’s economy, assist workers, address global warming issues and address issues of poverty.
Biden also named Nani Coloretti, a Filipino American, as Young’s deputy, marking the first time the Office of Management and Budget will be run by two women of color.
Young will have to be confirmed again by the Senate before taking office and there is no word yet on when that will take place.
Congratulations Shalanda! Because of you, we can!
UPDATE: Shalanda Young was confirmed as director of the White House Office of Management and Budget on March 15, 2022.
Photo Courtesy of Patrick Semansky/Associated Press