Nina Hachigian - Photo courtesy of

Nina Hachigian, Los Angeles’ deputy mayor of international affairs, was named the country’s first-ever Special Representative for Subnational Diplomacy by Secretary of State Antony Blinken Monday.

Hachigian has served under Mayor Eric Garcetti since 2017. She previously was U.S. ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and served on the staff of the National Security Council during the Clinton administration.

In her new role, first reported by the Los Angeles Times, Hachigian will lead the State Department’s efforts in strengthening ties with cities and communities. She will also be in charge of a new Unit for Subnational Diplomacy.

Hachigian said on Twitter she was “so deeply honored and thrilled” to take on the role.

Blinken said in a statement that local municipalities and states are on the front lines of pressing global issues that include climate change, economic justice and democratic renewal.

“We recognize the importance of delivering benefits to local communities as well as integrating the ideas of our cities and communities into our policymaking,” Blinken said. “U.S. cities and states are incubators for innovative and novel ideas that tackle global challenges, and the department should harness these solutions.”

Hachigian departs Garcetti’s office in final months of the outgoing mayor’s administration, while Garcetti himself is still awaiting a vote in the Senate on his nomination to be U.S. ambassador to India.

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