Department of Commerce Exchange of Letters on the Resignation of Juanita M. Kreps as Secretary.
To Secretary Juanita Kreps
With the greatest reluctance and regret, I accept your resignation. I wish it were possible for you to remain, for your absence will be a great loss for our administration.
Not only have I valued your advice on a broad range of economic matters but under your leadership your department has built an impressive record.
Also, in the growing area of international trade, your accomplishments have earned the department the major new role it will soon begin to play. You have begun the essential process of increasing the awareness of our country of the advantages of increased trade and exports. The Trade Agreement you negotiated during your visit to the People's Republic of China marks an historic step in establishing normal relations with one-quarter of the people who live on earth. In Europe, the Middle East, in the Soviet Union and other countries you have been a splendid emissary for the United States.
Finally, with love and genuine friendship I wish you well. We shall miss you. It is my hope that we shall have the continuing benefit of your advice and counsel in the future.
October 3, 1979
Dear Mr. President:
It is with deep regret that I offer my resignation as the Secretary of Commerce. My reasons are altogether personal.
Nearly three years ago, when we first met to discuss the economic issues that would face you as President, we were acutely aware of the problems before the Nation. Unemployment was high, the recession dragged on, and business confidence lagged. Threats of protectionism were widespread. Under your leadership, jobs have been created and the unemployment rate lowered significantly; businesses have prospered; new trade agreements promise larger markets for our producers and higher levels of living for the American people.
We now face the critical issues of rapidly rising energy costs and the inflation they generate. We must implement the trade agreements. In order to take advantage of widening world markets, we must find ways to increase our productivity and competitive strength. For the resolution of these longrun problems we shall need the most imaginative approaches, the most realistic assessment of alternatives.
While I am pleased with the progress we have made, I should have liked to continue with the work we have begun. You have my wholehearted support and my great admiration.
[The President, The White House, Washington, D.C. 20500]
Jimmy Carter, Department of Commerce Exchange of Letters on the Resignation of Juanita M. Kreps as Secretary. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/248700