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ARNE DUNCAN was nominated to be Secretary of Education by President-elect Barack Obama and was confirmed by the US Senate on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, 2009 and retired from his post in January this year. Prior to this, Duncan was appointed by Mayor Richard M. Daley as the chief executive officer of Chicago Public Schools. He held this position from June 2001 through December 2008, becoming the longest-serving, big-city education superintendent in the country.