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HHS GENERAL COUNSEL POST OFFERED TO COLUMBIA LAW PROF HARRIET RABB; MONGAN DECLINES OFFER OF ASST. SECTY FOR HEALTH; OMB NAMES MIN FIRST HEALTH ADVISOR

Executive Summary

HHS Secretary Donna Shalala has offered the post of general counsel to Harriet Rabb, currently vice-dean and George Jaffin professor of law and social responsibility at Columbia University Law School. Rabb joined the university faculty in 1971. As the former director of the Clinical Education department, she oversaw student casework in employment rights, education law, and fair housing. Rabb has authored many articles focusing on equal opportunity law and in the 1970s represented a group of women in a publicized sex discrimination suit against the New York Times. She was a member of the Ford Foundation from 1977-1989, sitting also on the board of the NAACP legal and education fund, Asia Watch, and Legal AID. Senate Judiciary/Antitrust Subcommittee Chief Counsel and Staff Director William Corr also reportedly was a candidate for the general counsel post. HHS may have offered Corr the position of deputy general counsel. HHS also is said to have offered the position of assistant secretary for human development services to Mary Jo Bane, currently the commissioner of the New York Department of Social Services. HHS must find a new candidate for assistant secretary for health following the withdrawal of James Mongan, MD. After having tentatively accepted nomination to the post ("The Pink Sheet" Feb. 8, T&G-1), Mongan had second thoughts and submitted a letter Feb. 9 to HHS Secretary Donna Shalala asking that his name be withdrawn "for personal and family reasons." He reportedly did not want to move his family from Kansas City, Mo., maintain a second home in Washington or try to commute between the cities. The Office of Management & Budget has named Nancy-Ann Min to the newly created position of associate director for health care issues. Announced on Feb. 10, the appointment establishes a seventh associate directorship by breaking out health responsibilities from the OMB associate director for human resources, veterans and labor. During the Bush Administration, that position was held by Thomas Scully, who played a key role in including the Medicaid rebate legislation in OBRA 1990. Scully now is an attorney with the Washington firm Patton Boggs & Blow. Min also is a lawyer and since 1991 has worked with the Washington firm Covington & Burling, where she has been working on state and federal issues. Previously she was a commissioner in the Tennessee Human Services Department. She served in the Carter White House on the staff of the assistant to the president for political liaison before earning a Harvard law degree in 1983. After earning her BA from the University of Tennessee, Min, like a number of Clinton Administration appointees, was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. OMB Director Leon Panetta said in a Feb. 10 press statement that "no issue is a higher priority for the Clinton Administration than giving the nation a health care system that provides quality, affordable care to every American." Min "brings great experience and obvious abilities to this job," Panetta continued, and "she will play a key role as the President and Mrs. Clinton seek to design, enact and implement a plan that controls costs and provides quality care to all."

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