President Biden on Tuesday announced his intent to appoint Marilynn Malerba as the next Treasurer of the US in a brief White House statement, setting her up to be the first Native American to hold the position.
Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen confirmed the decision ahead of her visit to the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, calling it a “historic appointment.”
“Her leadership and experience will deepen our commitment to help expand economic opportunities for all Tribal communities,” Yellen added.
With Malerba’s appointment, it will be the first time in US history that a Tribal leader and Native woman’s signature will be seen on newly printed currency.
Malerba, the 18th Chief of the Mohegan Tribe, currently serves on the Treasury Tribal Advisory Committee and has previously worked as a Director of Cardiology and Pulmonary Services at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital. The tribe’s reservation is located on the Thames River in Uncasville, Conn.
As Treasurer, Malerba will directly oversee the US Mint, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Fort Knox, and would act as a liaison with the Federal Reserve. She will also head up a newly formed Office of Tribal and Native affairs which will employ staffers focused on Tribal policy and communications with Tribal nations.
“I am honored and humbled by Secretary Yellen and the Biden Administration’s commitment to ensuring that all voices are heard by Treasury as we work together to create an equitable and just society,” Malerba said in a statement shared by the Treasury Department.
“It is especially important that our Native voices are respected. This appointment underscores this Administration’s commitment to doing just that. I am excited to serve our communities as Treasurer and for the work ahead.”
As of 2012, the position of Treasurer no longer requires Senate confirmation.
Since taking office, the president has actively taken steps to express a commitment to tribal nations into his administration, including through naming Deb Haaland as the first Native American to lead the Interior Department.
In October 2021, Biden became the first president to issue a presidential proclamation of Indigenous People’s Day in an effort to refocus the previously observed Columbus Day holiday.
During her visit to the Rosebud Indian Reservation on Tuesday, Yellen is expected to tout the American Rescue Plan passed last year and how it has benefitted tribal communities.
With Post Wires.