President Joe Biden is nominating the widow of late Democratic Sen. Edward M. Kennedy to serve as the United States Ambassador to Austria.
“My parents and grandparents taught us through the example of their own lives how important it is to serve and give back. And my late husband, and his extended family, embodied the noblest qualities of service to country,” Victoria Reggie Kennedy said in a statement responding to the news. “I am humbled by the confidence the president has placed in me, and if confirmed, I look forward to being able to serve my country as ambassador to Austria.”
Kennedy, 67, is currently a senior counsel at the international law firm Greenberg Traurig and has been a personal friend of Biden’s for many years.
Last week, the Austria Press Agency reported that she had received a positive endorsement from the office of Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen. The nation’s chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, also expressed support for her appointment calling it an “honor” for Austria.
Kennedy has been described by her peers as a “top-notch corporate lawyer.”
Biden served with Kennedy’s deceased husband in the United States Senate for 36 years and spoke at his funeral in 2009.
When Biden’s son Beau died of cancer in 2015, Kennedy sent a heartfelt message of support to Biden, which the president said at the time was one of the most treasured condolences he received and said he views Kennedy as a “sister.”