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‘Iolani alum nominated for HUD deputy secretary


The White House has nominated Nani Coloretti, a 1987 ‘Iolani School graduate, to be deputy secretary at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Coloretti had been picked by President Barack Obama in November to be chief financial officer in the Department of the Treasury. That nomination was withdrawn Monday when Obama nominated Coloretti to the HUD executive post.

She has been the  treasury department’s assistant secretary for management for the past year.

The Washington Post this week said there were only two women who are currently serving as deputy secretaries in the Obama administration: Heather Higginbottom at the State Department and Krysta Harden at Agriculture, and another nomination is pending: Sarah Bloom Raskin at Treasury. The Senate is scheduled to vote on Raskin this week.

Coloretti, 44, served as the department’s deputy assistant secretary for management and budget from 2009 to 2012.

"It’s always a pleasure to see women from Hawaii being recognized for their commitment to service and their leadership qualities. Nani will bring a wealth of experience to this job and I look forward to working with her once confirmed," said Sen. Mazie Hirono.

Before joining the Treasury, Coloretti worked for four years in San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom’s office.

"Hawaii is very proud of Nani Coloretti, an Iolani graduate, for her years of service and her nomination to become Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development," said U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa. "Nani is only the second Asian American Pacific Islander that President Obama has nominated for a Deputy Secretary position, and I believe she will continue to be a strong advocate for our state and our HUD issues. I urge the Senate to quickly confirm her nomination."

She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.

"I commend President Obama for nominating a great candidate from Hawaii," Sen. Brian Schatz said in a statement. " Nani Coloretti, originally from Kapahulu, has done a great job as assistant secretary for management at the Department of the Treasury and would make a terrific deputy secretary for HUD. She is the right person for the job and I am confident she will do well as deputy secretary.  I, like many in Hawaii, am proud of her accomplishments and hope she is confirmed quickly." 

The White House Monday also nominated former Hawaii resident Erika Moritsugu to position of assistant secretary for congressional and intergovernmental relations at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Both nominations need Senate confirmation and are now pending before the Senate Banking Committee, Hirono’s office reported.

Moritsugu is currently the deputy assistant director for legislative affairs at the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. Prior to that, Moritsugu was the deputy legislative director for U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka from 2010 to 2012. Moritsugu previously served in several capacities at the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. She has also held positions at Hogan and Hartson, LLP; The Wexler Group; the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Honolulu prosecutor’s office.

"She will bring unique experience to the job," Hirono said of Moritsuga. "From serving as the Deputy Legislative Director for Sen. Akaka to working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service to her time at the Prosecuting Attorney’s office for the City and County of Honolulu, Erika brings tremendous skill and talent to all that she undertakes."

Moritsugu graduated from University of Hawaii Lab School and earned her law degree from George Washington University Law School.

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