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Walmart CEO Doug McMillon on CNBC. Photo: Adam Jeffery/CNBC via Getty Images

Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon was named Thursday as the incoming chairman of the Business Roundtable, a CEO-only group that recently sparked a national conversation about the evolving role of corporations in society.

Why it matters: McMillon — born in Arkansas, where Walmart is headquartered, and with the company his whole career — brings a heartland face to business at a time when CEOs face rising political pressure from employees, social media and customers.

  • McMillon, 52, begins a two-year term on Jan. 1 and succeeds JPMorgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon, who has served three years as BRT chair.
  • Walmart, with 2.1 million employees around the world, is enmeshed in many of the policy issues facing the BRT — from trade and taxation to automation and health care.

McMillon was an early leader within Walmart on driving sustainability and led recent efforts to raise wages and increase workforce training.

  • He said in a statement: "In the coming months, there will be extensive conversations about America’s future and the role business plays in shaping it. ... I commit to keeping Business Roundtable CEOs at the forefront of constructive public policy debates."

Dimon said in an interview: "I think Walmart is the epitome of an inclusive-economy company."

  • Josh Bolten, the Business Roundtable's President and CEO, said: "Doug is the ideal person to pick up from Jamie in bringing the broader business community together on looking forward to how do we make sure that this economy works for every American."

Go deeper:

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Tina Reed, author of Vitals
1 hour ago - Health

New clues emerge on long COVID

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

The presence of certain autoantibodies or high amounts of coronavirus RNA in the blood could be indicators a patient has a higher chance of developing long COVID, according to a new study in the journal Cell.

  • Other factors include a person having Type 2 diabetes or the reactivation of the Epstein-Barr virus.

Biden says he'll make Supreme Court pick by end of February

President Biden speaks on the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Abaca/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden on Thursday said he will announce the nominee for Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer's replacement by the end of February.

Driving the news: Biden also affirmed that he will nominate a Black woman to replace Breyer, saying "it's long overdue."

Stephen Breyer formally announces retirement from Supreme Court

Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP

Justice Stephen Breyer on Thursday sent a letter to President Biden formally announcing his retirement from the Supreme Court.

State of play: Breyer said his retirement will take effect when the court "rises for the summer recess (typically late June or early July) assuming that by then my successor has been nominated and confirmed."