Jan. 16 (UPI) -- President-elect Joe Biden on Saturday announced new members of his U.S. State Department team including former Obama-era officials and long-time diplomats, to serve undersecretary of state nominee Antony Blinken.
Biden plans to nominate Wendy Sherman as deputy secretary of state and Victoria Nuland as undersecretary of state for political affairs, the second and third in command after Blinken.
"America is back," a statement from Biden said. "Collectively, [this team] have secured some of the most defining national security and diplomatic achievements in recent memory -- and I am confident that they will use their diplomatic experience and skill to restore America's global and moral leadership."
Sherman was a former acting deputy secretary of state in the Obama administration and Nuland served as a career diplomat for five administrations.
Obama-era official Brian P. McKeon will be nominated for deputy secretary for management and resources.
The Biden announcement also included international arms expert Bonnie Jenkins for undersecretary for arms control and international security affairs and career diplomat Uzra Zeya for undersecretary for civilian security, democracy and human rights.
Blinken, the Obama-era U.S. deputy secretary of state, served as Biden's national security adviser in the Obama administration. As Biden's foreign policy chief, he played a key role in crafting U.S. foreign policy actions in the Middle East.
Blinken and other top members of the proposed Biden Cabinet will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.
Biden on Saturday also announced additions to his science team in a broadcast from Wilmington, Del.
Biden has included a science adviser at the Cabinet level in his new White House team, in a break with tradition. Biden on Saturday called his new team "some of themes brilliant scientific minds in the world."
Eric Lander, a Harvard and MIT life scientist who helped map the human genome, is Biden's pick to be director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy.
"Today the opportunities we have and the challenges we face are greater than ever before," Lander said Saturday. "No nation is better equipped than America to face these challenges," he added.
Biden announced that Princeton's Alondra Nelson would be nominated as deputy science policy chief. Nelson, president of the Social Science Research Council, has worked to promote equity in science and technology.
"Our mission is to make sure that science and technology reflects us, reflects all of us and who we truly are together," Nelson said.
As assistant policy chief Biden announced he will nominate Frances Arnold, a California Institute of Technology chemical engineer who won the 2018 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
Co-chair will be Maria Zuber, MIT's vice president for research and geophysics professor who works with NASA to map Mars and other planets.
Francis Collins will stay on as president of the National Institutes of Health. Collins worked with Lander on the human genome project.