Watch CBSN Live

Chuck Rosenberg appointed acting DEA administrator

The Department of Justice on Wednesday announced the appointment of Chuck Rosenberg as the new acting administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Rosenberg, currently the chief of staff to FBI Director James Comey, earned praise from his bosses after his appointment was announced.

"Throughout his distinguished career in law enforcement and public service, Chuck has earned the trust and the praise of his colleagues at every level," said Attorney General Loretta Lynch in a statement. "As Acting Administrator of the DEA, Chuck will play a vital role in the work of this Administration and this Department of Justice to pursue American priorities, protect American interests, and safeguard our way of life. I can think of no better individual to lead this storied agency, and I have no doubt that his tenure will be defined by the same commitment to honor and excellence that has guided him throughout his distinguished career."

In his position at the FBI, according to the Justice Department, Rosenberg has worked closely with Comey and other senior law enforcement leaders on "counterterrorism, intelligence, cyber and criminal investigative issues." He's also assisted Comey on management and personnel issues at the bureau.

First woman to lead the DEA is stepping down

"Chuck Rosenberg is one of the finest people and public servants I have ever known," Comey said in a statement. "His judgment, intelligence, humility, and passion for the mission will be sorely missed at FBI. I congratulate our friends at the Drug Enforcement Administration. This is good for the entire Department of Justice and the country."

Before joining the FBI, Rosenberg worked in private practice at several law firms. He was also appointed the U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of Virginia, and he served in that post from 2006-2008 after being confirmed by the Senate.

Rosenberg will assume acting leadership of the DEA on May 18, 2015, replacing the current administrator, Michele Leonhart. Lynch may not be in any hurry to drop "acting" from Rosenberg's new title, given that the position requires Senate confirmation, and the current political climate sometimes makes Senate confirmation challenging.

View CBS News In