John Rakolta Jr. Confirmed as Ambassador to U.A.E.

The U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of John Rakolta Jr. on Tuesday to become President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the United Arab Emirates.

Rakolta, of Bloomfield Hills, is a prominent Republican fundraiser and heads up Detroit-based Walbridge Aldinger, a construction company that builds factories and other large-scale projects around the world.

He is also a prominent member and previous business honoree of Alianta.

He was confirmed on a vote of 63-30 with seven senators not voting Tuesday afternoon. Michigan’s two senators — Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters, both Democrats — voted for Rakolta’s confirmation.

He takes over at a time of unrest in the Middle East. The UAE and another U.S. ally, Saudi Arabia, have worked closely together, including battling Iranian-backed rebels in Yemen, but the sides have shown signs of splitting recently over some strategy and tactics.

Read more here: https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2019/09/17/detroit-john-rakolta-ambassador-uae/2354091001/