Renowned Neurosurgeon Carson To Head US Housing Department

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Former Contender  for the White House in the Republican Party, Ben Carson has agreed to head the US housing department.

The retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, a presidential rival-turned-supporter, has accepted the U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Trump’s transition team said on Monday.

Carson, a popular writer and speaker in conservative circles, has been a close adviser to Trump since he dropped out of the 2016 Republican presidential primary contest and he is a vice chairman of Trump’s transition team.

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Trump discussed the job with Carson before the Thanksgiving Day holiday last month, although Carson had indicated reluctance to take a position in the incoming administration because of his lack of experience in federal government.

The president-elect, who also has no government experience and has never held public office, expressed confidence Carson could do the job.

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“Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities,” Trump said in a statement.

 

The transition team described Carson as “a distinguished national leader who overcame his troubled youth in the inner city of Detroit to become a renowned neurosurgeon.”

Carson said he was honored to accept the post. “I feel that I can make a significant contribution particularly by strengthening communities that are most in need,” he said in the statement.

Carson, 65, is the first African-American picked for a Cabinet spot by Trump, who takes office on Jan. 20 and has been gradually filling out his administration since beating Democrat Hillary Clinton in the Nov. 8 presidential election. The position requires confirmation by the U.S. Senate.

Carson, a highly respected neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, had been considered for U.S. surgeon general and head of Health and Human Services Department.

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His business manager, Armstrong Williams, said last month that Carson had decided not serve in Trump’s administration because “his life has not prepared him to be a Cabinet secretary.” But Carson said after meeting with Trump he believed he could make a contribution.

In 1987, Carson was the lead neurosurgeon of a 70-member surgical team that separated conjoined twins, Patrick and Benjamin Binder, who had been joined at the back of the head (craniopagus twins).

(Parts:Reuters)

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