WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden is nominating Victoria Kennedy, an attorney and the widow of Sen. Ted Kennedy, to serve as his ambassador to Austria. He's naming a top political fundraiser – Comcast executive David Cohen – to serve as his ambassador to Canada, the White House said Wednesday.
Kennedy is the president of the board and co-founder of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, a non-partisan nonprofit that educates the public about the U.S. Senate, and also leads the education committee of the board of trustees for the Kennedy Center in Washington.
She has also served on the boards of gun control advocacy groups, the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence in Washington, D.C., as well as Stop Handgun Violence in Boston. She founded the group Common Sense about Kids and Guns, aimed at reducing guns deaths and injuries to children.
“My parents and grandparents taught us through the example of their own lives how important it is to serve and give back,” Kennedy said in a statement.
Cohen is a senior executive at the cable company Comcast, and previously served as chief of staff to another powerful Biden ally, Ed Rendell, when Rendell was mayor of Philadelphia. He was an early backer of the president's third White House run, hosting Biden's first 2020 presidential campaign fundraiser.
Cohen said in a statement that, if confirmed, he would look to grow “the important relationship” as both nations look to rebound from the coronavirus pandemic. Canada announced this week that it would ease restrictions at the border next month, allowing U.S. citizens and permanent residents living in the U.S. who are fully vaccinated to enter without quarantining.