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The nominations had been reported earlier this week, but had not been made official until Thursday morning.

ADVERTISEMENTVilsack, a former two-term Iowa governor who helmed the Agriculture Department for all eight years of the Obama administration, has strong ties to Biden.

No one fits that description better than Tom Vilsack since he knows the department better than anyone,” said the source familiar with the president-elect’s thinking.

The role is a Cabinet-level position, and Tai would be the first Asian American and woman of color hold the job.

Tai has had extensive experience working on trade relations with China and speaks fluent Mandarin.

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