- The Magazine
Karine Jean-Pierre, an out lesbian and longtime Democratic activist who served as a senior advisor to the Joe Biden presidential campaign and chief of staff to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, has been named as the White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary for the incoming Biden-Harris administration.
Jean-Pierre, a veteran of the Obama White House, who also worked for the progressive website MoveOn.org and various political campaigns, will be the highest-ranking Black woman to have ever held her position.
She will be part of an all-female White House communications team that includes White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, another Obama administration veteran who previously served as White House Deputy Press Secretary, White House Deputy Communications Director, and White House Communications Director; Kate Bedingfield, a veteran of the Biden campaign who will be the new White House Communications Director; and Pili Tobar, the new White House Deputy Communications Director.
Other members of the communications team include Symone Sanders, a Biden campaign senior advisor who will now serve as senior advisor and chief spokesperson for the Office of the Vice President; Ashley Etienne, the soon-to-be communications director for the Office of the Vice President; and Elizabeth Alexander, the communication director for First Lady Jill Biden.
Jean-Pierre offered praise for her fellow communications team colleagues on Twitter.
“I’m so proud that our communications team for the Biden-Harris administration is a roster filled w/ rockstar women,” she tweeted. “All will bring dignity, professionalism and expertise to their respective roles!”
I’m so proud that our communications team for the Biden-Harris administration is a roster filled w/ rockstar women: @jrpsaki, @KBeds, @SymoneDSanders, @AshleyEtienne09 @EAlexander, @pilitobar87 All will bring dignity, professionalism and expertise to their respective roles!
— Karine Jean-Pierre (@K_JeanPierre) November 30, 2020
Incoming White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain praised the seven women, saying their appointments embody the president-elect’s “commitment to a diverse administration where the voices of all Americans are represented.”
“Communicating directly and truthfully to the American people is one of the most important duties of a President, and this team will be entrusted with the tremendous responsibility of connecting the American people to the White House,” Biden said in a statement announcing the appointments. “I am proud to announce today the first senior White House communications team comprised entirely of women. These qualified, experienced communicators bring diverse perspectives to their work and a shared commitment to building this country back better.”
“Our country is facing unprecedented challenges–from the coronavirus pandemic to the economic crisis, to the climate crisis, and a long-overdue reckoning over racial injustice,” Harris added in her own statement. “To overcome these challenges, we need to communicate clearly, honestly, and transparently with the American people, and this experienced, talented, and barrier-shattering team will help us do that.”
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