Jeff Zients has stepped down as the No. 2 official at the Office of Management and Budget. He had been OMB deputy director for management since June 2009 and served as the agency's acting chief since January 2012. (Thomas Brown / Staff)
Jeff Zients has stepped down as the No. 2 official at the Office of Management and Budget. He had been OMB deputy director for management since June 2009 and served as the agency’s acting chief since January 2012.
“Beginning May 1, 2013, I can no longer be reached at OMB,” Zients said in an automated email response. An OMB spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for confirmation Friday afternoon; a listed phone number at Zients’ Washington residence has been disconnected.
His departure, first reported by Federal News Radio, came about a week after Sylvia Mathews Burwell was confirmed as the next OMB director. It means that Burwell takes over with vacancies in the positions of both OMB deputy management director and deputy budget director. The latter position has been empty since February when Heather Higginbottom moved to the State Department; Obama has nominated White House economic adviser Brian Deese as her replacement, but the Senate has not yet acted on his nomination. Friday is also the final day for Shelley Metzenbaum, OMB’s associate director for performance and personnel management.
Zients, a management consultant, was confirmed by the Senate in June 2009. President Obama also named him as the nation’s first chief performance officer, but he handed off that title early last year to Lisa Brown, another OMB official, after he became acting director.