Obama nominates Walmart Foundation's Burwell for budget chief


US President Barack Obama speaks to the media about sequestration in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, DC, March 1, 2013 following a meeting with US Speaker of the House John Boehner and Congressional leaders.


Saul Loeb

President Barack Obama nominated Walmart Foundation director Sylvia Mathews Burwell for budget director on Monday, according to the Associated Press

The move would see her take on a critical position at a time of heated government debate on fiscal policy, said AP, saying the president is "thrusting her into the center of Washington's heated partisan budget battles."

The Wall Street Journal described the director position for the Office of Management and Budget as a "key policy-making slot that has broad influence on tax and spending proposals."

At the moment, the 47-year-old West Virginia native directs the charitable Walmart Foundation and earlier worked with the Gates Foundation. She also served as the deputy director for the Office of Management and Budget under Clinton, reported AP, and was chief of staff to former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin. 

Burwell must win Senate approval before assuming the Cabinet-rank position, according to CNN, while The New York Times said her appointment would see her only the second woman to hold the office in US history. 

If confirmed, Burwell would come on board alongside another recent Clinton veteran-turned-Obama appointee, new treasury secretary Jack Lew, said Reuters