President Obama praised outgoing Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner this afternoon, during a press conference to announce  his chief of staff Jack Lew as Geithner's successor.

Obama praised Geithner for helping rescue the “wreckage of our economy still smoldering and unstable” from the economic crisis in 2008 and for saving the auto industry, creating new jobs and raising taxes on the rich.

“When the history books are written, Tim Geithner is going to go down as one of our finest Secretaries of the Treasury,” Obama said proudly as the audience applauded.

Obama added that the “unofficial” saying at the Treasury was “no peacocks, no jerks, no whiners.”

“Few embody that ideal better than Tim Geithner,” Obama added.