William F. Hagerty was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Thursday to be President Trump’s ambassador to Japan.
Senators voted 86-12 to to approve Hagerty’s nomination, the Associated Press reports.
Hagerty is a founder and the managing director of the private-equity firm Hagerty Peterson and Company, which has corporate offices in Nashville and the Chicago area.
From 2011-2014, the Tennessee native served as Gov. Bill Haslam’s economic development commissioner.
He served as Mitt Romney’s national finance chair in 2008, and earlier in his career, served under former President George H.W. Bush as a White House fellow, reporting to the vice president on matters related to international trade, commerce, treasury, defense and telecommunications.
A supporter of Jeb Bush early in the 2016 presidential election cycle, he switched to Trump after he secured the nomination. Hagerty was then instrumental in Trump’s campaign and later became director of presidential appointments for Trump’s transition team.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved Hagerty’s nomination last month after he assured Democrats that he had no role in the screening of Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national security adviser. Flynn is a key figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Hagerty told Democrats that in his role on Trump’s transition team, he focused on Cabinet picks and not White House staff aides.