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President Biden Announces Karine Jean
Anita Dunn will return as a Senior Advisor Today, President Biden announced Karine Jean-Pierre has been promoted to be Assistant to the President and
President Biden Announces Karine Jean-Pierre as White House Press Secretary
MAY 05, 2022 •
STATEMENTS AND RELEASES
Anita Dunn will return as a Senior Advisor
Today, President Biden announced Karine Jean-Pierre has been promoted to be Assistant to the President and White House Press Secretary. Karine will step into the Press Secretary role replacing Jen Psaki, who will depart from the White House on May 13.
Statement from President Biden: “I am proud to announce that Karine Jean-Pierre will serve as the next White House Press Secretary.
“Karine not only brings the experience, talent and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris Administration on behalf of the American people. Jill and I have known and respected Karine a long time and she will be a strong voice speaking for me and this Administration.
“Jen Psaki has set the standard for returning decency, respect and decorum to the White House Briefing Room. I want to say thank you to Jen for raising the bar, communicating directly and truthfully to the American people, and keeping her sense of humor while doing so. I thank Jen her service to the country, and wish her the very best as she moves forward.”
The White House also announced the return of Anita Dunn as a Senior Advisor and Assistant to the President. Dunn rejoins the White House staff from her communications and political consulting firm SKDK, and will assist in advancing the President’s policy and communications objectives.Karine Jean-Pierre, Press Secretary and Assistant to the President
Karine Jean-Pierre is currently the Principal Deputy Press Secretary and Deputy Assistant to the President. Karine is a long-time advisor to President Biden, having served in senior communication and political roles in the Biden Administration, the Biden campaign, and to then-Vice President Biden in the Obama Administration.
Prior to her role on the campaign, she served as Chief Public Affairs Officer for MoveOn.org and an NBC and MSNBC Political Analyst. Jean-Pierre served as Regional Political Director for the White House Office of Political Affairs during the Obama-Biden administration and as Deputy Battleground States Director for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. She served as Southeast Regional Political Director for President Obama’s 2008 campaign, Deputy Campaign Manager for Martin O’Malley for President, Campaign Manager for the ACLU’s Reproductive Freedom Initiative, and Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Legislative and Budget Affairs for two members in the New York City Council.
Previously, she worked at the Center for Community and Corporate Ethics, pushing major companies to change their business practices, and is a published author. Born in Martinique and raised in New York, Jean-Pierre is a graduate of Columbia University.Anita Dunn, Senior Advisor and Assistant to the President
Anita Dunn is one of the nation’s top communications and political strategists, and is a close advisor to President Biden. She recently served as a Senior Advisor to President Biden, and is currently a partner and founding member of SKDK. She brings decades of experience advising Presidents and senior Democrats. She served as a chief strategist to President Obama as a senior campaign advisor and as the White House Communications Director. She has also worked in leading roles for Tom Daschle, Bill Bradley, and Evan Bayh.
As Senior Advisor to President Biden, Anita advised on the administration’s overall strategy and messaging, helping the President take steps and win legislative victories that helped jumpstart the economy after the pandemic. Prior to that, she served as a senior advisor on the Biden-Harris campaign, advising on all aspects of the campaign. At SKDK, Anita has worked with progressive and issue advocacy campaigns, given strategic advice to elected officials, political candidates, CEOs, nonprofits and corporations.
Jean-Pierre will also be the first openly gay person to have the most visible post at the White House aside from the president.
Karine Jean-Pierre will become White House's 1st Black press secretary
Updated May 5, 20226:08 PM ET
Heard on Morning Edition
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President Biden named Deputy White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre as the next press secretary, the first Black woman to hold the high-profile post. Jean-Pierre, who will also be the first openly LGBTQ+ person in the role, appeared at Thursday's press briefing.
Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
President Biden has named Karine Jean-Pierre as his second White House press secretary, replacing Jen Psaki later this month. Jean-Pierre, who has been Psaki's deputy since the start of the administration, will make history several times over.
She will be the first Black press secretary in White House history and the first openly gay person in this high-profile role, speaking for both the president and the U.S. government in press briefings that are watched by the world.
"Karine not only brings the experience, talent and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris Administration on behalf of the American people," Biden said in a statement announcing the news. "Jill and I have known and respected Karine a long time and she will be a strong voice speaking for me and this Administration."
"This is a historic moment, and it's not lost on me," Jean-Pierre said at Thursday's press briefing, where she appeared with Psaki, embracing and holding hands at times.
"I understand how important it is for so many people out there, so many different communities, that I stand on their shoulders and I have been throughout my career," she added.
Psaki referred to her successor as "my partner in truth." She added, "One of the first conversations we had when we both found out we were getting these jobs was about how we wanted to build a drama-free, on your best days, workplace where everybody worked hard. Where we, on our best days, were rebuilding trust with the public."
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki is hugged by current Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre during a press briefing at the White House on Thursday after it was announced Psaki would step down from her role next week and be replaced by Jean-Pierre.
Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
Jean-Pierre came to the Biden team from the progressive organization MoveOn.org, where she was a top communications staffer. She was also a regular on MSNBC. Jean-Pierre has already led several White House press briefings, including when Psaki was out with COVID.
"It's a real honor just to be standing here today," Jean-Pierre said in May 2021 during her first turn behind the famous lectern. "I appreciate the historic nature, I really do. But I believe being behind this podium, being in this room, being in this building, is not about one person. It's about what we do on behalf of the American people."
Karine Jean-Pierre Is The 1st Black Woman In Decades To Brief White House Press
Jean-Pierre has had a few rough briefings, winding up in the hot seat on days when there were headlines the White House didn't have great answers for. In one briefing on Air Force One, she accidentally suggested the U.S. favored admitting Ukraine to NATO, before quickly walking it back upon landing. She is generally well liked among reporters and will provide continuity as significant turnover is expected in White House press operations in the coming weeks.
Psaki is widely expected to take a job at MSNBC when she leaves. Her last day is scheduled for May 13th.
"Jen Psaki has set the standard for returning decency, respect and decorum to the White House Briefing Room," said Biden in the statement. "I want to say thank you to Jen for raising the bar, communicating directly and truthfully to the American people, and keeping her sense of humor while doing so."
In addition to the elevation of Jean-Pierre, the White House announced long-time Biden adviser Anita Dunn will return as a senior adviser and assistant to the president. She briefly left the administration last summer to work at the consulting firm SKDK, but didn't stay away long.
Raised in New York, Jean-Pierre was born in Martinique and went to Columbia University. Throughout her career she has bounced between Democratic political campaigns and left-leaning organizations.
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CLOSING THE GAP
What to know about Karine Jean-Pierre, the first Black and first openly gay White House press secretary
Published Fri, May 6 202210:55 AM EDT
Jennifer Liu @JLJENNIFERLIU SHARE
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki (R) introduces Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre (L) during a White House daily press briefing at the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House May 5, 2022 in Washington, DC.Alex Wong | Getty Images News | Getty Images
The White House press secretary job has existed for 93 years — and for the first time, it’ll soon be held by someone who isn’t white.
Karine Jean-Pierre has been named the Biden administration’s new White House press secretary, becoming the first Black woman and the first out LGBTQ person to take the high-profile job. As press secretary, Jean-Pierre will speak on behalf of the president and U.S. government to address reporters, the American public and the world about policy decisions every day.
Jean-Pierre is already a familiar face in the White House briefing room: She’s currently the principal deputy press secretary, and has led the White House’s daily press briefing a few times already. She’ll be behind the podium more often once she starts her new role on May 13.
“Karine not only brings the experience, talent and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris Administration on behalf of the American people,” President Joe Biden announced in a statement Thursday.
Jean-Pierre spoke about her appointment at Thursday’s press briefing: “This is a historic moment, and it’s not lost on me,” she said. “I understand how important it is for so many people out there, so many different communities, that I stand on their shoulders and I have been throughout my career.”
Jean-Pierre was born in Martinique to Haitian parents and was raised in Queens, New York. She graduated from the New York Institute of Technology and received a Master of Public Affairs from Columbia University.
Her experience in politics is extensive. Before becoming deputy press secretary, Jean-Pierre served as a senior advisor to Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign and in August 2020 was named chief of staff for Biden’s vice presidential nominee, who had not yet been announced.
She previously worked in the White House under former President Barack Obama, during his 2008 and 2012 campaigns, and as a long-time advisor to Biden when he was vice president.
On Thursday, Jean-Pierre thanked outgoing Press Secretary Jen Psaki, saying “she has been just a wonderful colleague, a friend, a mentor during this past year and a half.” Psaki’s last day is May 13, and she’s expected to take an on-air job at MSNBC.
Psaki, meanwhile, praised her history-making colleague and successor, writing on Twitter: “She will be the first black woman and the first openly LGBTQ+ person to serve as the White House Press Secretary. Representation matters and she will give a voice to many, but also make many dream big about what is truly possible.”
“She is passionate,” Psaki added. “She is smart and she has a moral core that makes her not just a great colleague, but an amazing Mom and human. Plus, she has a great sense of humor.”
Psaki, who stated her intention early in her tenure to stay in the press secretary role for only a year, previously told CNBC Make It that finding her successor was a big part of her job from day one. “I hope I can play a role bringing a greater diversity of voices and faces and experiences to people who are serving as spokespeople on behalf of the White House and the government,” Psaki said.
Jean-Pierre tweeted about her appointment on Thursday, calling it “a true honor” and adding, ”I look forward to serving this Administration and the American people. I have big shoes to fill.”
Jean-Pierre led her first White House briefing in May 2021, making history as the first openly gay woman and just the second Black woman to do so.
“I appreciate the historic nature. I really do,” Jean-Pierre said at the time. “But I believe that being behind this podium, being in this room, being in this building isn’t about one person. It’s about what we do on behalf of the American people. Clearly the president believes representation matters, and I appreciate him giving me this opportunity.”Check out:The best career advice White House press secretary Jen Psaki ever gotJudge Ketanji Brown Jackson confirmed to become the first Black woman U.S. Supreme Court justiceSign up now: Get smarter about your money and career with our weekly newsletter
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