May 24, 2023 - News

Biden administration taps Derek Kitchen to join Export-Import Bank

Derek Kitchen. Photo courtesy: U.S. Export-Import Bank

The Biden administration appointed Derek Kitchen, a former Utah Democratic state senator, to serve as acting senior vice president and deputy director of the Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs for the U.S. Export-Import Bank.

Details: The new gig comes nearly a year after Kitchen, the only openly gay Utah lawmaker at the time he served, narrowly lost the Senate District 9 Democratic primary race against now-state Sen. Jen Plumb, by 61 votes.

  • He told Axios that early conversations about the role started last September and discussions ramped up this January.

Context: The Export-Import Bank is a federal agency that seeks to support U.S. jobs by promoting the export of American goods and services.

What he's saying: "When I lost, I was obviously heartbroken and really wanted to continue to serve my city, my state and my country," said Kitchen.

Flashback: Prior to serving one term in the Utah Senate between 2019 and 2022, Kitchen was a member of the Salt Lake City Council.

  • Kitchen’s victory in a 2013 federal lawsuit challenging Utah’s same-sex marriage ban helped set the precedent for other states to follow.

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