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Gidwitz nominated as ambassador to Belgium: "It's exiciting, because it's so different"

U.S. President Donald Trump has nominated Ron Gidwitz, his Illinois campaign finance chair, as ambassador to Belgium. Belgium has been without a U.S. ambassador since Denise Bauer left in January 2017. Gidwitz is 73-year-old businessman from Chicago.

After Denise Bauer (appointed by Barack Obama) had left, there were talks of Jamie Court taking over. A lawyer and business woman and the former head of the baseball team LA Dodgers, Court eventually went to Paris.

It's eventually Gidwitz who will have the honour, though his nomination still has to be approved by the Senate. Gidwitz played an important role in the funding of Trump's election campaign. His nomination is not expected to face difficulties in gaining the Senate's approval.

Going to school

Gidwitz plans to attend a State Department 'ambassador school' for a month with special focus on major international issues, while his wife, Christina, will attend a two-week course.

“What’s really exciting about it is that it’s so different. It’s going to be something that I’ve never done before. I’ve travelled extensively overseas but never lived overseas. I’ve had volunteer jobs but I’ve never had one quite as serious. There aren’t very many quite as serious as this,” Gidwitz was quoted by the Chicago Tribune.

Belgium, he said, is “the centre of Europe in terms of what’s going on. NATO’s there. The EU is there. Belgium has been a great ally of ours for 150 years. And from my standpoint, my French isn’t great, but at least I can speak some French.”