President-elect Joe Biden has appointed a Nigerian-American, Osaremen Okolo, as a member of his COVID-19 Response Team.The Democrat named Okolo, daughter of Nigerian immigrants, as his COVID Policy Advisor.Biden, who takes office on January 20, had also named Nigerian-born Adewale Adeyemo as the Deputy Treasury Secretary.Both Okolo and Adeyemo were amongst Biden’s first 100 White House appointees, according to the Biden-Harris Presidential Transition team.
“Prior to joining the transition, Okolo served as Senior Health Policy Advisor to US Representative Jan Schakowsky of Illinois. Okolo drafted, negotiated, and managed the Congresswoman’s legislation, oversight, and policy across comprehensive health care and public health agenda, most recently focusing almost exclusively on the COVID-19 pandemic,” the transition team said in a statement.
She had also served as Legislative Aide for Health Policy on the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labour, and Pensions for Ranking Member Patty Murray of Washington, the team added.Okolo, whose parents are reportedly from Edo State, was born and raised in Massachusetts and graduated from Harvard College.
According to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, the COVID-19 Response Team will “work to quickly implement a comprehensive, whole-of-government COVID-19 response strategy to contain the pandemic, restore public trust, and protect all Americans”.