U.S. President Joe Biden is expected to name Thomas Nides as the new ambassador to Israel, the Washington Post reported Tuesday.
Nides, who is Jewish, served as a senior official in the State Department under former president Barack Obama and is currently managing director and vice chairman of Morgan Stanley.
He was slated to be Hilary Clinton's White House chief of staff during her ultimately unsuccessful bid for presidency in 2016.
Aaron Miller, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a former member of the Clinton administration and a friend of Nides, praised the expected appointment.
"Tom Nides to Israel. Full disclosure, [he is] a good friend but a very smart choice. Of the options, a career FSO; big donor; or the smart well-connected insider trusted by Biden with govt/diplomatic experience, Nides is the right move," Miller said on Twitter.
In an interview with Jewish Insider, Miller said Biden "went with a very smart, politically well-connected individual with plenty of government experience. A guy who has a real pro-Israeli sensibility but also I think is capable of the kind of detachment that is critically important to finding the balance in the U.S.-Israel relationship between protecting Israel’s interests and protecting ours.”
Biden is expected to name several new ambassadors to key positions in the coming weeks including envoys to Japan, Canada and NATO.
Nides, a close associate of Secretary of State Antony Blinken, was seen as a surprise pick for the job that has been vacant since January when former Ambassador David Friedman left the embassy.
Among possible candidates reported to be considered to fill the position were former Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro and a donor to the Biden presidential campaign, Michael Adler.