In late December 2011, President Barack Obama nominated Stein, a Harvard University finance professor and Democrat, and Powell, formerly of Dillon Read, Bankers Trust 1 and The Carlyle Group 2 and a Republican. Both candidates also have Treasury Department experience in the Obama and George H.W. Bush administrations respectively 3.
"Obama administration officials [had] regrouped to identify Fed candidates after Peter Diamond, a Nobel Prize-winning economist, withdrew his nomination to the board in June  in the face of Republican opposition. Richard Clarida, a potential nominee who was a Treasury official under George W. Bush, pulled out of consideration in August ", one account of the December nominations noted 4 . The two other Obama nominees in 2011, Yellen and Raskin 5, were confirmed in September 6. One of the vacancies was created in 2011 with the resignation of Kevin Warsh, who took office in 2006 to fill the unexpired term ending January 31, 2018, and resigned his position effective March 31, 2011 7, 8. In March 2012, U.S. Senator David Vitter (Republican Party of the United States|R, Louisiana|LA) said he would oppose Obama's Stein and Powell nominations, dampening near-term hopes for approval 9. However Senate leaders reached a deal, paving the way for affirmative votes on the two nominees in May 2012 and bringing the board to full strength for the first time since 2006 10 with Duke's service after term end.