President Joe Biden has nominated Meg Whitman, the former CEO of Quibi, Hewlett Packard and eBay, as the next U.S. ambassador to Kenya.
Whitman ran for governor of California in 2010 as a Republican, but lost to Jerry Brown. But she endorsed Biden in the 2020 presidential race and appeared at the Democratic National Convention. In her speech, she said that she was “a longtime Republican and a longtime CEO” and that “Donald Trump has no clue how to run a business, let alone an economy.” Whitman also endorsed Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Her nomination has to be confirmed by the Senate, where there is a long backlog of ambassadorial picks awaiting the go-ahead to move to their posts. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee has yet to hold a hearing on Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s nomination to be ambassador to India.
Whitman also is a member of the board of Procter & Gamble and General Motors, and national board chair of Teach for America. She also has been an executive at The Walt Disney Co. and Hasbro. Quibi, the short-form streaming platform she launched with Jeffrey Katzenberg, launched in April, 2020 but shut down in December of that year. Whitman also held campaign finance positions on the presidential campaigns of John McCain, Mitt Romney and Chris Christie.