Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Joe Biden’s Entirely Female WH Communications Team Includes Ex-Bernie Sanders Press Sec

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Democratic President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on Sunday announced the first-ever all-female White House senior communications team.

“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,” Biden said in a statement.

“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,” he added.

Most members of the new team have previously worked for Biden and other Democrats. Jen Psaki, who was named as the White House press secretary, had served under the Obama administration as a White House communications director, deputy White House communications director, and deputy White House press secretary.

Harris and Biden
President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris hold a news conference at the Queen Theater on November 19, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware.
Joe Raedle/Getty

“Honored to work again for @JoeBiden, a man I worked on behalf of during the Obama-Biden Admin as he helped lead economic recovery, rebuilt our relationships with partners (turns out good practice) and injected empathy and humanity into nearly every meeting I sat in,” Psaki wrote in a tweet after the announcement.

Symone Sanders was named as senior adviser and chief spokeswoman for the vice president. She previously worked as a senior adviser on Biden’s 2020 campaign after serving as Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders‘ 2020 campaign press secretary.

“Also AN ALL LADY SQUAD?! I am excited to serve alongside @AshleyEtienne09, my battle buddy @KBeds, @jrpsaki, @pilitobar87 and @EAlexander332. We each take our service seriously and are elated to get to work for the people and build back better! Lets go ladies!” Symone Sanders tweeted.

Kate Bedingfield is slated to become Biden’s White House communications director. Prior to the announcement, Bedingfield was the Biden campaign’s communications director and deputy campaign manager. She also worked for the former vice president under the Obama administration.

“I’m unspeakably proud to have the opportunity to serve as White House Communications Director for @joebiden,” Bedingfield tweeted. “Working for him as VP and on this campaign gave me insight into what kind of capable, compassionate, clear-eyed president he will be and it will be a profound honor to be a small part of his work.”

The Biden administration’s principal deputy press secretary will be Karine Jean-Pierre, who worked as an adviser for Biden’s 2020 campaign. Jean-Pierre was previously an MSNBC and NBC analyst.

Pili Tober, a former deputy director at America’s Voice, a nonprofit focused on immigration reform, was named the deputy White House communications director.

Vice President-elect Harris’ communications director will be Ashley Etienne, who also worked on Biden’s campaign as an adviser. Etienne had served as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi‘s communications director and senior adviser.

“On behalf of our House Democratic Majority, I congratulate Ashley and thank her for her important and impactful service in my office and in the House,” Pelosi said in a statement. “Her experience working on both sides of Pennsylvania Avenue and the immense respect she commands among both Members and staff will make her a powerful force in the Biden-Harris Administration.”

Former Biden campaign senior adviser Elizabeth Alexander was named as first lady Jill Biden‘s communications director.

“Honored & humbled to join @DrBiden and her growing team as she charts her own historic path forward as the next FLOTUS. And so proud [to] be part of this group of hard-working pros and strategic communicators,” Alexander wrote on Twitter.

Newsweek reached out to the president-elect’s transition team for additional information.

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