President Barack Obama has tapped a former top aide to former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to take over the No. 3 post at the State Department.
The White House says that Albright's one-time counselor and North Korea expert, Wendy Sherman, was nominated Friday to be undersecretary of state for political affairs.
The choice is unusual as the position is usually held by a serving career diplomat. Sherman is the vice chair of Albright's consulting firm, the Albright Stonebridge Group, and was an adviser to Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential campaign.
If confirmed by the Senate, Sherman will succeed veteran diplomat William Burns, who has been nominated to be deputy secretary of state. Burns would replace James Steinberg, who resigned to take a teaching position at Syracuse University.