Jen Psaki also known as Jennifer Rene Psaki (born December 1, 1978) was the 34th White House press secretary from 2021 to 2022. She formerly worked as the White House deputy press secretary (2009), the White House deputy communications director (2009–2011), the spokesman for the US Department of State (2013–2015), and the White House communications director (2015–2017) in the Obama administration. From 2017 through 2020, Psaki was a CNN political contributor.
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Table of Contents
Early Life And Education
Jen Psaki was born in 1978 in Stamford, Connecticut, to psychologist Eileen Medvey and retired real estate developer Dimitrios “James” R. Psaki, whose grandfather moved from Greece in 1904 and whose grandmother was of Irish origin. In 1976, her parents married. Psaki is also of Polish descent.
In 1996, She graduated from Greenwich High School. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English and sociology from the College of William and Mary in 2000. She belongs to the Chi Omega sorority. She was a two-year member of the William & Mary Tribe athletic team as a competitive backstroke swimmer.
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Psaki started her political career in 2001, working on the re-election campaigns of Iowa Democrats Tom Harkin for the Senate and Tom Vilsack for governor. After that, she worked as the deputy press secretary for John Kerry’s presidential campaign in 2004. Jen Psaki worked as the communications director for U.S. Representative Joseph Crowley and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee‘s regional press secretary from 2005 to 2006.
Psaki was the traveling press secretary for U.S. former President Barack Obama during his 2008 presidential campaign. Psaki joined Obama at the White House as deputy press secretary after his election victory, and on December 19, 2009, she was moved to deputy communications director. Jen Psaki resigned from this post on September 22, 2011, to join the Washington, D.C. office of public relations company Global Strategy Group as senior vice president and managing director.
Jen Psaki returned to politics in 2012 as the press secretary for Barack Obama’s reelection campaign. She was appointed as the US Department of State’s spokesman on February 11, 2013. Her appointment at the State Department prompted speculation that she would succeed White House Press Secretary Jay Carney after he departed the White House, however, Carney was replaced by Josh Earnest on May 30, 2014. She returned to the White House as communications director in 2015 and lasted until the conclusion of Obama’s presidency. Jen Psaki joined CNN as a political commentator on February 7, 2017.
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Being The White House press secretary
Jen Psaki departed CNN in November 2020 to join the Biden-Harris transition team. Jen Psaki was selected as the Biden administration’s White House press secretary later that month. She gave her first press conference after the inauguration on the evening of January 20. In an interview with former Senior Advisor to President David Axelrod on May 6, 2021, Psaki stated that she would leave her role as press secretary “in about a year.”
Jen Psaki was accused of breaching the Hatch Act in October 2021 by a watchdog group for her statements on the 2021 Virginia governor election. She said that she had tested positive for COVID-19 on November 2, 2021. She returned to work on November 12, 2021, after quarantining and fully healing, praising her vaccination status for her quick recovery.
Jen Psaki tested positive for COVID-19 for the second time in six months on March 22, 2022, and did not join President Biden on his trip to Europe. Jen Psaki was expected to leave the White House “around May” for a job at MSNBC, according to Axios on April 1, 2022. The White House announced on May 5, 2022, that she will be stepping down on May 13, 2022, and named her senior deputy, Karine Jean-Pierre, to take her place.
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Role Of The White House Press Secretary
The White House press secretary is a top White House official whose major role is to serve as a spokesperson for the executive branch of the US federal government, particularly for the president, senior aides, and executives, as well as government policy.
The president’s press secretary is in charge of gathering information regarding the president’s administration’s actions and events, as well as issuing the administration’s responses to global events. On a daily basis, the press secretary engages with the press and the White House press corps, usually at a daily news briefing.
The press secretary is appointed by and serves at the pleasure of the president of the United States; the position does not require the advice and consent of the United States Senate, but it is a prominent non-Cabinet position due to the frequent briefings given to the global media, who in turn inform the public.
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Who Is Karine Jean-Pierre?
Karine Jean-Pierre, an American political advisor, was born on August 13, 1977, and has been the White House press secretary since May 13, 2022, following the departure of Jen Psaki, making her the first black and LGBTQ person to hold the position. Between 2021 and 2022, she worked as Jen Psaki’s deputy press secretary. During the 2020 presidential campaign, she was the chief of staff for US vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris.
She previously worked for MoveOn.org as a senior advisor and national spokesman, as well as NBC News and MSNBC as a political analyst. She is also a former Columbia University lecturer in international and public affairs.
Karine Jean-Pierre’s Early Life
Karine Jean-Pierre was born in Fort-de-France, Martinique, on August 13, 1977, to Haitian parents. She was reared in the Queens Village district of Queens, a borough of New York City, with her two younger siblings since she was five years old. Her mother worked as a home health aide and was an enthusiastic member of her Pentecostal church, while her father drove a cab. Jean-Pierre was frequently responsible for caring for her younger siblings because both parents worked most days of the week.
When she was between the ages of seven and ten, Jean-Pierre was sexually abused by an older male cousin, according to her 2019 book. In 1993, Jean-Pierre graduated from Kellenberg Memorial High School, a Long Island college preparatory school. In 1997, she graduated from the New York Institute of Technology with a B.S. [In 2003, she received a Master of Public Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), where she served in student government and decided to pursue a career in politics.
Following graduation, Karine Jean-Pierre worked for New York City Councilor James F. Gennaro as the head of legislative and fiscal affairs. She began working for Walmart Watch in Washington, D.C. as an outreach coordinator in 2006. In 2004, she worked for John Edwards‘ presidential campaign as the southeast regional political director. In 2014, she joined the Columbia University faculty as an international and public affairs lecturer.
She was a key adviser for Joe Biden’s presidential campaign in 2020. She joined the Biden campaign in May 2020, and told The Haitian Times that she was motivated by a desire to change the future; she claimed that when the campaign approached her, she looked at her daughter and realized, “There is no way I can not get engaged in this election.” In August, it was revealed that Jean-Pierre will be the Chief of Staff for Biden’s yet-to-be-chosen vice presidential pick.
Jean-Pierre was named Principal Deputy Press Secretary by the Biden-Harris transition team on November 29. She conducted her first White House press briefing on May 26, 2021, making history as the first openly homosexual woman and the first black woman to do so since 1991. In 2021, she was included in Fast Company‘s “Queer 50” list.
On May 5, it was reported that she would take over as White House Press Secretary on May 13, succeeding Jen Psaki. Karine Jean-Pierre is the first black and openly LGBT person to hold the position.
Following the news that she would be the next White House Press Secretary, Jean-Pierre was chastised for tweets in which she referred to the 2016 presidential election as “stolen” and Donald Trump as an “illegitimate President.” Jen Psaki defended her, claiming that Jean-Pierre has now agreed that both elections have been settled, that Trump won in 2016 and Kemp won in 2018, and that “people should admit who won regardless of preference.”
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Karine Jean Pierre’s Personal Life
Karine Jean-Pierre and her partner, CNN correspondent Suzanne Malveaux, and their daughter live in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area as of 2020. She speaks English, French, and Haitian Creole fluently. She attempted suicide while she was in her early twenties, according to her 2019 memoir.
“What’s been wonderful is that I wasn’t the only; I was one of many,” Karine Jean-Pierre said in an interview on her job as an out gay White House aide during Barack Obama’s presidency.
President Obama didn’t employ LGBT personnel; instead, he hired experienced LGBT people. It’s been an incredible joy to serve and work for President Obama, where you can be openly gay. It was a dream come true to be a member of a government that put LGBT concerns first.” Moving Forward, Jean-first Pierre’s novel was released in 2019. It’s “part memoir, part call to arms,” according to WJLA-TV, in which she chronicles her personal and professional life and encourages people to get active in politics.
Jen Psaki’s Personal Life
Jen Psaki married Greg Mecher, then-chief of staff to Congressman Steve Driehaus, on May 8, 2010. Mecher then worked as Congressman Joe Kennedy’s chief of staff. In 2006, the two met at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. They are the parents of two children.
Jen Psaki’s Net Worth
Jen Psaki has an estimated net worth of $27 million dollars in the United States. Under the current Biden administration, Jen Psaki is the White House Secretary. Jen Psaki began her political career in 2001, working on the re-election campaigns of Iowa Democrats Tom Harkin for the United States Senate and Tom Vilsack for governor. Jen Psaki is the owner of Jaguar and BMW. Jen Psaki’s annual take-home salary as White House secretary is more than $180,000 each year. Jen Psaki owns a lot of assets and houses in Washington and California.