Award-winning economist Lawrence Summers served as treasury secretary in the Clinton administration and then went on to become president of Harvard. He drew worldwide attention for his comments that biological differences may partly explain the dearth of women among the very highest-achieving scientists, a controversy that led to his resignation. Summers also is serving as Obama's economic advisor and was chief economist at the World Bank.
John Podesta heads up Obama's transition team and was another name being tossed around in the rumor mill as a possible Obama administration official. Podesta served as White House chief of staff under Bill Clinton from October 1998 until the end of his term and is currently the president and CEO of the Center for American Progress.
The Chicago native tried to quell rumors that he would join the Obama White House in an internal memo to Center for American Progress Action Fund colleagues this week, in which he reportedly said he would return to the CAPAF after the transition period. Podesta's memo however, hasn't completely silenced speculation. Many cite his experience not only in the White House, but his numerous advising roles on Capitol Hill as solid qualifications for an Obama administration.
Obama's top foreign policy adviser,Susan Rice, is another potential White House administration official. Her name been tossed around by the press as a possible secretary of state or national security adviser.
Rice served as assistant secretary of state in Bill Clinton's administration and was a senior adviser for national security affairs for the 2004 Kerry-Edwards campaign.
Another Clinton Cabinet member, Federico Peña, was one of Obama's transportation advisers during the campaign and is part of his transition team. Peña was secretary of transportation from 1993 to 1997 and secretary of energy from 1997 to 1998. Peña is credited with bringing in Hispanic votes for Obama, particularly in Colorado, where he is from.
The second-term Arizona governor Janet Napolitano is an adviser to Barack Obama's transition team. Napolitano, an early supporter of the president-elect, is a popular Democrat in Republican-leaning Arizona, which went in the election for the native son, Obama opponent John McCain.
She pushed to limit greenhouse emissions and the Washington Post has announced her as one of the contenders for the position of attorney general. Napolitano was Arizona's first female attorney general prior to her appointment as governor. She has been outspoken on immigration issues and has been an outspoken advocate of more federal government's responsibility in border control issues.