Obama taps Jim Yong Kim for World Bank

JULIE PACE Associated Press Published:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama nominated Dartmouth College president and global health expert Jim Yong Kim to lead the World Bank, an unconventional pick that could help to quell criticism in the developing world over the U.S. stranglehold on the international organization's top post.

Obama said the Korean-born Kim's breadth of experience on development issues made him the ideal candidate to carry out the international financial institution's anti-poverty mission.

"It's time for a development professional to lead the world's largest development agency," Obama said Friday morning during a Rose Garden ceremony.

Obama was joined by Kim in the Rose Garden, along with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who first recommended that Obama consider Kim for the World Bank post.

The 187-nation World Bank focuses on fighting poverty and promoting development. It is a leading source of development loans for countries seeking financing to build dams, roads and other infrastructure projects.