Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki, a retired four-star Army general, appears to be stacking his sub-Cabinet with fellow veterans. We’re hearing buzz that Shinseki will name W. Scott Gould, who served in Iraq as a naval intelligence reservist, as his deputy secretary. Gould, a former assistant secretary of commerce who once served in the Clinton White House, is a vice president at IBM Global Business Services.
Meanwhile, Shinseki is eyeing disabled Iraq war veteran Tammy Duckworth as assistant secretary for public and intergovernmental affairs. Duckworth, whom Obama had considered for the top VA post, currently runs the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs. A former congressional candidate, Duckworth had been mentioned as a candidate for the Senate seat Obama vacated. After losing both her legs in combat, Duckworth was an outspoken critic of President George W. Bush’s Iraq war policy.
Sources say Shinseki also could tap Roger Baker, who served on Obama’s transition team and is a longtime information technology executive in government and private industry, for a top VA post, perhaps as chief innovation officer.