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Biden appoints 26-year-old Nigerian-American as White House counsel

Updated: May 15, 2021

United States President-elect Joe Biden has appointed Nigerian-born Funmi Olorunnipa Badejo as a White House counsel.

“Today, President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris announced additional members of the Office of the White House Counsel,” a statement on the Biden-Harris transition website read.

“These experienced and accomplished individuals have a wide range of knowledge from various fields and will be ready to get to work on day one.”

Badejo, a lawyer and an alumna of Berkeley Law College in the US, was named among the additional 20 new members of the office of the White House counsel.

According to the statement, Badejo has served as a counsel for policy to the assistant attorney general in the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, Ethics Counsel at the White House Counsel’s Office and Attorney Advisor at the Administrative Conference of the United States during the Obama-Biden administration.

“Olorunnipa Badejo began her legal career as an associate with the law firm of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP and was Legal Counsel at Palantir Technologies Inc. She is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the University of Florida. Originally from Florida, Olorunnipa Badejo lives in Washington D.C. with her husband and son,” the statement read.

She was also a general counsel of the House Selected Subcommittee on the Coronavirus crisis which was chaired by James Clyburn, house majority whip.

Badejo is not the first Nigerian- American to be appointed by the US president-elect. Adewale Adeyemo was recently announced as deputy secretary of the treasury department.

Another Nigerian American, Osaremen Okolo, was also appointed a member of Biden’s COVID-19 response team.


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