President-elect Joe Biden has hired an all-female senior communications team, three of whom are Black women.
The seven women team’s tree Black women–Symone Sanders, Karine Jean-Pierre and Ashley Etienne–come with an over-abundance of experience, respect and accolades.
“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.
“These qualified, experienced communicators bring diverse perspectives to their work and a shared commitment to building this country back better,” Biden continued.
This is the first time in U.S. history that the top voices speaking with the press and the public on behalf of a presidential administration will be all women. According to the Washington Post and other sources, of the entire communication staff, seven women will hold the upper ranks.
President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris today announced new members of the White House staff who will serve in senior communications roles.
For the first time in history, these communications roles will be filled entirely by women.https://t.co/SjWAWJg941
— Biden-Harris Presidential Transition (@Transition46) November 29, 2020
Many may be familiar with the faces and voices of Sanders and Jean-Pierre. Sanders is a former CNN political commentator and senior advisor for Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign. In 2016, Sanders was the youngest presidential press secretary, a roll she served in when she worked for Senator Bernie Sanders (VT) in his bid for the Democratic nomination. Sanders will now serve as Senior Advisor and Chief Spokesperson for Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.
Ready to serve accurately describes how I feel. Thank you Madam Vice President-elect @KamalaHarris for entrusting me with this charge. It has been the honor of my life to work for @JoeBiden & I am elated to have the opportunity to continue to that work in the PEOPLE’S HOUSE.
— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) November 29, 2020
Jean-Pierre, former senior advisor to Biden and chief of staff for Harris, made a name for herself as the Southeast Reginal Political Director for President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign. Over the past few years she has been a regular guest on MSNBC’s AM Joy. Jean-Pierre’s new assignment: the Principal Deputy Press Secretary for the Biden-Harris administration.
Though Etienne has worked off-camera, she is no less known and respected by Washington power brokers than Sanders and Jean-Pierre. Etienne, who has recently been named the Communications Director for the Vice President, formerly served as a Senior Advisor on the Biden-Harris campaign.
In August, Vanity Fair called Etienne “Biden’s deadliest weapon against Trump” and “the queen of the war rooms” for her involvement in Democrats’ impeachment messaging towards Donald Trump.
Vice President-elect Harris, stated her excitement and confidence in the all-women senior communications team and their “commitment to building a White House that reflects the very best of our nation.”
“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,” said Harris in a 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,” Harris continued.