President Donald Trump on Friday announced that he intended to nominate Kelly Knight-Craft, the current U.S. envoy to Canada and a former businesswoman, to the vacant post of United Nations ambassador.
Posting on Twitter, the president said that Craft would do "an outstanding job representing our nation and I have no doubt that, under her leadership, our Country will be represented at the highest level."
If confirmed, Craft, a GOP donor and a Kentucky native, will fill the post vacated by former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley, who drew frequent praise as an aggressive defender of U.S. interests at the world body. Haley, who was the Trump administration's highest-ranking woman, was a relentless critic of Russia and Syria.
Craft became a front-runner for the position based on a recommendation by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. She helped facilitate the high-stakes renegotiations of the trade pact between the United States, Mexico and Canada, and once served as a member of the US delegation to the UN General Assembly under President George W. Bush. She is also friends with McConnell's wife, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
--Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this article.