President Barack Obama announced seven top appointments for his second term Friday, including chief of staff and a new deputy national security advisor, Antony Blinken.
Blinken is the nephew of Alan Blinken, a former ambassador to Belgium who lives in Ketchum and was the Democratic candidate who unsuccessfully challenged GOP Sen. Larry Craig in 2002.
"He is my nephew and a great guy," Blinken confirmed to me today is a quick email.
Born in New York City, Antony Blinken had been the national security adviser to Vice President Joe Biden. Blinken also worked for Biden on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Biden has called him "one of the smartest guys I've ever worked with."
Blinken's bachelor's degree is from Harvard, his law degree from Columbia.
Blinken was among those in the room during the operation that killed Osama bin Laden and served on the National Security Council during the Clinton Administration.