View Header


Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 2, 1998
                          PRESIDENT CLINTON 
                         AND STEPHEN KOPLAN 

The President today announced his intent to nominate Thelma J. Askey, Jennifer Anne Hillman, and Stephen Koplan as Commissioners on the International Trade Commission.

Ms. Thelma J. Askey, of Millington, Tennessee, is presently the Staff Director of the Trade Subcommittee of the House Committee on Ways and Means. She is responsible for developing and scheduling all trade issues coming before the subcommittee, including oversight of multilateral and bilateral negotiations, fast-track extensions, China's MFN status, trade relations with non-market economies and oversight of key bilateral trade relations with Japan, Canada and Mexico. She is the former Minority Trade Counsel of the Trade Subcommittee where she was the principal trade advisor to the Republican members of the committee. In that capacity, she was responsible for developing issues and strategies and monitoring the Administration?s trade policy and programs activities. Ms. Askey holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Tennessee Technological University and has completed graduate work in history and international economics at the University of Tennessee, George Washington University and American University.

Ms. Jennifer Anne Hillman, of South Bend, Indiana, served as General Counsel for the United States Trade Representative (USTR) from 1995-1997. She was responsible for a wide variety of trade matters, including all U.S. government submissions in dispute settlement cases pending before either the World Trade Organization or NAFTA panels as well as all legal work done in connection with trade negotiations. Prior to that position, she served as Chief Textile Negotiator with the Rank of Ambassador for USTR. Prior to her tenure at USTR, Ms. Hillman was the Legislative Director and Counsel to United States Senator Terry Sanford from North Carolina. She began her professional career in Washington D.C., as an attorney for the firm Patton, Boggs & Blow. Ms. Hillman received her B.A. in political science and an M.A. in Higher Education Administration from Duke University. Ms. Hillman received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Mr. Stephen Koplan, of Fairfax, Virginia, most recently was the Director for Governmental and Conservation Affairs at Safari Club International. Prior to his position at Safari Club International, he served as a Principal at the law firm of Bayh & Connaughton in Washington, D.C. Prior to his tenure at Bayh & Connaughton, Mr. Koplan was Vice President of Governmental Affairs for Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, Inc., where he directed the federal legislative and regulatory operations of the company with emphasis on tax and foreign trade. Mr. Koplan also served as a Legislative Representative for the AFL-CIO, acting as their chief lobbyist for tax and foreign trade legislation. Mr. Koplan earned a B.A. from Brandeis, a Juris Doctor from Boston University, and a Master of Laws (in taxation) from New York University.

The International Trade Commission (ITC) is an independent, bipartisan, quasi-judicial agency that serves as an impartial factfinding and analytic body and provides objective and independent analyses of a wide range of international trade issues. The scope of the ITC's authority has been gradually increased to include additional miscellaneous advisory and investigative functions. The ITC is also responsible for administering U.S. trade law remedies and determining if U.S. industries are entitled to relief. In addition, the ITC makes recommendations to the President about such issues as imposing quotas or tariffs.