The president July 27 nominated Jessica Looman to serve as administrator of the U.S. Department Labor’s Wage and Hour Division. She currently serves as the division’s acting head.
Looman is President Joe Biden’s second pick to lead the division. He initially nominated former WHD Administrator David Weil to return to the post, but Weil failed to secure enough votes in the Senate for confirmation.
Looman previously served as executive director of the Minnesota State Building and Construction Trades Council, representing 70,000 union construction professionals, according to the White House.
“Looman represents the logical choice for the administration,” Paul DeCamp, a management-side attorney with law firm Epstein Becker Green, told HR Dive via email. If confirmed, her priorities will certainly reflect those of the Democratic administration, he said; but notably, she has not, during her time as acting administrator, “engendered the hostility of the business community the way that [Weil’s] aggressively anti-business agenda did.”
As a former WHD administrator himself, DeCamp said Looman has so far proven herself capable of articulating the agency’s mission “without sounding as though she is on a campaign to upend the entire economy.”
“Her experience with the agency since early 2021 qualifies her well for the role,” he continued, “and I hope that the Senate gives her a fair hearing.”