R. Alexander Acosta nominated as Secretary, U.S. Department of Labor

Feb. 17, 2017: R. Alexander Acosta was nominated as the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor yesterday, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017, by President Trump. Acosta, Republican, was nominated one day after Andrew Puzder withdrew as the nominee for the post on Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, after support for him decreased among Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Senate for various reasons. Acosta is currently the Dean of the Florida International University Law School, a post he has held since 2009. Since 2013, Acosta has also worked as the Chairman of Century Bank, a community bank located in Florida. Acosta was previously a Member of the federal government’s National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Acosta worked for the NLRB from December, 2002, to August, 2003 and authored more than 125 opinions, according to his Florida International University official biography. A Harvard law graduate, Acosta was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2003 as the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice. Acosta was the first Hispanic U.S. Assistant Attorney General, and he was the longest-serving U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida since the 1970s. After working as Law Clerk for Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr., then a Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, Acosta practiced law at the firm of Kirkland and Ellis and taught law at the George Mason School of Law. If he is confirmed as the Labor Department Secretary, Acosta would be Trump’s first Hispanic Cabinet member.

Attribution: White House, The Hill, Associated Press, Florida International University

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