President Trump picks Rockford native as U.N. Ambassador

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIFR) - Updated December 7, 2018, 9:00 a.m.

President Donald Trump announces the nomination of Rockford native Heather Nauert as the United Nation's next ambassador.

According to CNN, Trump told reporters on the South Lawn of the White House this morning that Nauert had done a "great job" at the State Department.

"She's very talented, very smart, very quick, and I think she's going to be respected by all," Trump said.

Nauert is a Keith Country Day School graduate remembered fondly by educators.

She is currently the State Department spokeswoman under former secretary Rex Tillerson.

Nauert previously was a reporter for Fox News.

She still has to be confirmed by the Senate to take over the Cabinet position currently held by the outgoing Nikki Haley.

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From broadcaster, to State Department Spokeswoman to potential cabinet member; it's been a meteoric rise for Rockford's Heather Nauert.

And for those that knew Heather when she was a student at Keith Country Day School, Nauert being on a big stage does not come as a big shock.

"She was well liked. She had an air of diplomacy," said Nauert's high school math teacher Anita Papich. "Even back at a young age you could tell she had a dramatic flair to her."

Papich spent 38 of her 50 years in teaching as Keith School's math department chair. Papich was also Heather Nauert's faculty advisor.

"I recall her very much as a people person," said Papich. She has taught thousands of students, but Keith's School's 1987 Homecoming Queen made a lasting impression.

"Homecoming Queen at Keith School is not a popularity contest. I remember Heather as a student who worked very hard to achieve her grades. She was interested in school. And I remember her mostly because she was a great friend to quite a few student."

"Heather always struck me as a competent student," said Heather's high school biology teacher Lou Anne Johnson: who spent 34 years as the Science Chair at Keith. "She was a very likable young lady and always very cooperative in her interaction in class"

Johnson says her greatest memory of Heather came on her last day at Keith: graduation day. "I really have a very vivid memory of Heather at graduation; what she looked like that day. Because she was just radiant and very very beautiful and always such a lovely girl. I hate to be superficial but i can't help but remember how pretty she was and she's still an attractive woman"

And a very powerful woman.

"To be considered for a U.N. Ambassadorship is something very very special, and it was a slight surprise to me that one of our Keith students would be considered for this position. But it shouldn't have been because many of our students have excelled in their area of expertise."

President Trump is expected to officially nominate Nauert for U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. on Friday. She will still have to be confirmed by the Senate to take over the Cabinet position currently held by the outgoing Nikki Haley.