President-elect Chinchilla names campaign chief to be foreign minister

February 26, 2010

President-elect Laura Chinchilla gave the country its first glimpse into her cabinet Tuesday, when she named campaign manager René Castro to head the Foreign Ministry.

Castro, a longtime civil servant who has served in a variety of government posts, will replace Bruno Stagno, who will be Costa Rica´s ambassador to the United Nations. The appointment was made in time for the Pathways to Prosperity ministerial summit that begins Wednesday, March 3.

During his acceptance speech at the Casa Amarilla, headquarters of the Foreign Ministry, on Tuesday, Castro said, “I humbly aspire to maintain the high regard (the administration of President Oscar Arias) has earned for Costa Rica in the world in issues relating to peace, disarmament and human rights, which has been the seal of President Arias´ administration and of Foreign Minister Bruno Stagno.”

A graduate of the University of Costa Rica, Castro earned a master´s degree and a doctorate from Harvard University, in Boston, Massachusetts, in the United States He served as environment minister, vice minister of the interior and transportation and public works minister. He´s a frequent lecturer and visiting professor at INCAE Business School in Costa Rica and at Harvard University and has served as a consultant for the United Nations Development Program.

Chinchilla, who said she is using “all the time I have” to make appointments, also named members of her transition team. These include her brother, Adrián Chinchilla Miranda; President Arias´ daughter, Silvia Arias; former Tourism Minister Carlos Roesch; and former Finance Minister Jorge Walter Bolaños.

Of the transition process, Adrián Chinchilla said it would be a “civic fiesta ” with ample participation of Costa Rican citizens

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