Hillary Clinton has been endorsed as President-elect Barack Obama's Secretary of State by the US Senate's foreign relations committee.
A final vote on her appointment will be taken in the Senate after the inauguration of Mr Obama on 20 January.
During the hearing, Mrs Clinton promised a departure from the foreign policy of the Bush administration.
The BBC reports the committee was in favour of her appointment by 16-1 votes.
The former first lady is expected to give her farewell speech to the Senate later on Thursday.