Who could possibly replace Larry Summers as director of the White House National Economic Council?

The former Treasury secretary and former Harvard University president offered his own thoughts on that very question at a National Journal forum on the workplace.

It was a valedictory appearance of sorts for Summers. National Journal’s Ronald Brownstein, a longtime political writer, saved the best question for last – Did Summers agree with the view gaining traction in Washington that Obama should name a businessperson to take over his job as director of the NEC when Summers leaves to return to his teaching job at Harvard?

“The president will hire whoever he thinks best,” Summers said.USA-FINANCE/SUMMERS

He disagreed with critics who say the administration does not listen enough to the business community, citing “extensive” White House contacts with executives.

Still, Summers said hiring someone with a business background would help dispel that notion.