President Barack Obama’s decision to pick Dartmouth President Jim Yong Kim took many by surprise, considering that Kim isn’t a regular in Washington circles.
“Dr. Kim’s name was closely held and not among those widely bandied about since Mr. Zoellick announced his plans to move on,” the New York Times wrote in its story on nomination.
”At this moment, across Washington, hundreds of surprised reporters and government aides are Googling ‘Jim Yong Kim’ to find out who he is,” joked Washingtonian magazine editor Garrett Graff on Twitter.
Kim’s been president at Dartmouth since 2009 and is a former director at the World Health Organization and the co-founder of Partners in Health, which provides health services to the poor. But career accomplishments aside, what about his lighter side? In a “Greenroom” online-only video interview he did during an appearance on “The Charlie Rose Show” in March, Kim opened up about less weighty matters.
His first job: “[A]s a waiter in a restaurant in my little town in Muscatine, Iowa.”
Favorite book: “The Miracle of Mindfulness” by Thich Nhat Han. “It was about a practice in which one can be deeply passionate and compassionate toward those who are suffering. This is a monk who was very active in the struggles against the Vietnam War when he was in Vietnam.”