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  • Ronald "Ron" Kirk is an American politician and the 16th United States Trade Representative, serving in the Obama Administration. Kirk is a member of the Democratic Party. Born in Austin, Texas, Kirk is a graduate of Austin's John H. Reagan High School, Austin College and the University of Texas School of Law. From 1994 to 1995, Kirk worked as the Secretary of State of Texas, until he was elected as the Mayor of Dallas, where he served from 1995 to 2002 and was the first African-American to hold either of those positions. He ran for the United States Senate in 2002, but was defeated by Republican opponent John Cornyn. After his defeat, Kirk worked as a partner at the Houston-based law firm Vinson & Elkins and worked as a lobbyist for Energy Future Holdings and Merrill Lynch. Kirk was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as U.S. Trade Rep and on March 18, 2009, and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in a 92–5 confirmation vote. On January 22, 2013, Kirk announced that he would be stepping down as U.S. Trade Rep. Wikipedia

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