Who is the current White House Press Secretary?

Jen Psaki delivered her 224th and final White House press briefing last Friday afternoon, 13th May 2022, stepping down from the role.

Karine Jean-Pierre (born August 13, 1974) has succeeded Jen Psaki, making her the first black person and the first openly LGBTQ person to hold the position.

I am sure you want to know everything about them, including why Jen Psaki resigned from her position.

Hold on until the end of this article to discover all these details. We haven’t missed to mention other secrets too, such as: their net worth, salaries and families.

“…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.” – Karine Jean-Pierre

Karine Jean-Pierre
Karine Jean-Pierre taking over the Press Secretary position on May 13, 2022. Credits to: telegraph.co.uk

And one more thing: we haven’t forgotten about the notorious former press secretary Kayleigh McEnany either!!! 

But let’s start with an overview of the White House Press Secretary Office, including the most noteworthy events throughout history.

Overview of the White House Press Secretary Office

The White House press secretary is a senior White House official whose primary responsibility is to serve as the executive branch of the United States federal government’s spokesperson, particularly for the president, senior aides, and executives, as well as government policies.

The press secretary is in charge of gathering information about actions and events within the president’s administration and communicating the administration’s reactions to global developments.

On a daily basis, the press secretary interacts with the media and the White House press corps, typically through a daily press briefing. The press secretary is appointed 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; however, due to the frequent briefings given to the global media, which in turn informs the public, the position is a prominent non-Cabinet post.

A Brief History of the Press Secretary Office

Back in the 1800s, journalists rarely went to the White House. This was partly because the president wasn’t as powerful as Congress, so journalists didn’t see a need. William W. Price, a reporter for the Washington Evening Star, may have been the first reporter to cover the White House. Starting in 1895, he stood outside the White House and talked to people as they left the building, which led other reporters to do the same.

In 1896, some reporters from newspapers decided to sit at a table outside the office of the president’s secretary (the 19th century equivalent of the chief of staff). They never really left, but it would be decades before the press had a person whose job it was to talk to the president.

George Cortelyou
George Cortelyou, American Cabinet secretary of the early twentieth century. Credits to: warontherocks.com

During Theodore Roosevelt’s presidency, one of his staff members, George Cortelyou, who was known as the president’s “confidential stenographer”, sent out the first presidential press releases and copies of his speeches. Roosevelt finally gave the press its own room in the White House and met with reporters often.

Still, George Akerson was the first person with the official job title of White House Press Secretary. Herbert Hoover put him in charge in 1929. Akerson was a reporter for the Minneapolis Tribune in Washington, just like many other press secretaries who came after him. Later, he worked as Hoover’s assistant when Hoover was Secretary of Commerce and was his right-hand man when he ran for president.

The Responsibilities of the White House Press Secretary

The press secretary’s job is to keep track of what’s going on in the president’s office and around the world, as well as to talk to the media, usually in a daily press briefing. The information includes things like a summary of the president’s day, who he or she has seen or talked to, and the official position of the administration on the day’s news.

Traditionally, the press secretary also answers questions from the White House press corps at briefings, press conferences, and “press gaggles.” Briefings and press conferences are usually televised, while “press gaggles” are on-the-record briefings without video recording, but transcripts are usually available.

What worked and what didn’t for press secretaries in the late 20th century

Different press secretaries have done their jobs in different ways. Some people have said or done the wrong thing when they were under a lot of stress. Others were put in hard positions of loyalty, whether they knew it or not.

  • Ronald Ziegler, who was Richard Nixon’s press secretary at the time and was the youngest person to hold the job, called the Watergate break-in a “third-rate burglary attempt”. Ziegler later said that he had been lied to and misled, and that he had not known anything about the scandal as it was happening.
  • Jerald terHorst, who was Gerald Ford’s first press secretary, quit over the pardon of Richard Nixon.
  • Larry Speakes, who took over for James Brady when Brady was hurt in the 1981 attempt to kill President Ronald Reagan, admitted to making up statements for Reagan.
Ronald Ziegler
Ron Ziegler, Richard Nixon’s only press secretary, serving more than 5 years the administration, during turbulent times. Credits to: politico.com

Some press secretaries were very good at what they did. Marlin Fitzwater worked for both George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. Reagan was known as the “Great Communicator”, but Bush wasn’t as good on TV or in speeches. Bush, on the other hand, knew a lot about the issues and felt at ease in the briefing room. In just four years, he met with the press 280 times. During a presidency that was bookended by the Persian Gulf War and a recession, Fitzwater and Bush did a great job of being open with the press, but they didn’t do a good job of expressing larger leadership ideas.

These big ideas helped elect President Bill Clinton, whose administration made history by putting Dee Dee Myers in charge of the press as the first woman and youngest person to do so. She took over when George Stephanopoulos, who was Clinton’s de facto press secretary at first, made a few mistakes when talking to the press. Myers, on the other hand, didn’t always have access to the president and the people in his inner circle.

Mike McCurry took over for Myers. He was known for being asked many times about Clinton’s private life during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. When reporters asked for personal information, McCurry avoided talking about it in internal meetings so he could do his job without lying to the press or hurting the president.

The role of the press secretary in today’s world

After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Ari Fleischer, who worked for George W. Bush, did a good job. Even though the daily briefing was already on TV, it got more people to watch it, and the press secretary became more important.

Ari Fleischer
Ari Fleischer served as the 23rd White House Press Secretary, for President George W. Bush, from January 2001 to July 2003. Credits to: nydailynews.com

When President Bush’s popularity dropped in his second term, many high-level staff members left the White House. Fleischer’s replacement, Scott McClellan, was one of the most visible people to leave. McClellan was replaced by Tony Snow.

Snow, who worked in the White House for Pres. George H.W. Bush and a well-known broadcast journalist and radio talk show host, was one of the first press secretaries to come to the job with celebrity status and gravitas. In 2007, Dana Perino took over for Snow as press secretary. She was the second woman to hold that job.

Robert Gibbs, who had been a communications director and press secretary for Obama’s campaign, was the first person to hold the job. Later, Obama gave the job to Jay Carney, who had worked as a reporter for the New York Times and as Joe Biden’s communications director. In 2014, Josh Earnest, Carney’s main deputy press secretary, took his place.

Sean Spicer
Sean Spicer, the former White House Press Secretary and Communications Director for President Donald Trump. Credits to: imdb.com

In 2017, Donald Trump chose Sean Spicer, who had been in charge of communications for the Republican National Committee, to be his press secretary. Spicer’s fights with the press made him well-known very quickly. He also said a lot of things that were not true or were controversial.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who had been the deputy press secretary at the White House, took over for Spicer when he quit later that year. Sanders didn’t meet with the press every day, and her replacement, Stephanie Grisham, didn’t meet with the press at all. In 2020, Kayleigh McEnany, the last press secretary for the Trump White House, took over from Grisham.

List of all White House Press Secretaries throughout history

Before we get into today’s hot topic, you might want to know who the previous White House Press Secretaries were. Here is a list of all of them, with the names of the presidents they served under:

Press Secretary Period President

George E. Akerson
March 4, 1929

March 16, 1931

Herbert Hoover
Theodore Joslin March 16, 1931

March 4, 1933

Stephen Early  March 4, 1933

March 29, 1945

Franklin D. Roosevelt 
Jonathan W. Daniels March 29, 1945

May 14, 1945

Harry S. Truman
Charlie Ross May 15, 1945

December 5, 1950

Stephen Early December 5, 1950

December 18, 1950

Joseph Short December 5, 1950

September 18, 1952

Roger Tubby September 18, 1952

January 20, 1953

James hagerty January 20, 1953

January 20, 1961

Dwight D. Eisenhower
Pierre Salinger January 20, 1961

March 19, 1964

John F. Kennedy
Lyndon B. Johnson
George Reedy March 19, 1964

July 8, 1965

Bill Moyers July 8, 1965

February 1, 1967

George Christian February 1, 1967

January 20, 1969

Ron Ziegler January 20, 1969

August 9, 1974

Richard Nixon
Jerald terHost August 9, 1974

September 9, 1974

Gerald Ford
Ron Hessen September 9, 1974

January 20, 1977

Jody Powell January 20, 1977

January 20, 1981

Jimmy Carter 
James Brady January 20, 1981

March 30, 1981

Ronald Reagan
Larry Speakers March 30, 1981

February 1, 1987

Marlin Fitzwater February 1, 1987

January 20, 1993

George H. W. Bush
Dee Dee Myers January 20, 1983

December 22, 1994

Bill Clinton 
George Stephanopoulos January 20, 1983

June 7, 1993

Mike McCurry December 22, 1994

August 4, 1998

Joe Lockhart August 4, 1998

September 29, 2000

Jake Siewert September 30, 2000

January 20, 2001

Ari Fleischer January 20, 2001

July 15, 2003

George W. Bush 
Scott McClellan July 15, 2003

May 10, 2006

Tony Snow May 10, 2006

September 14, 2007

Dana Perino  September 14, 2007

January 20, 2009

Robert Gibbs January 20, 2009

February 11, 2011

Barack Obama 
Jay Carney  February 11, 2011

June 20, 2014

Josh Earnest June 20, 2014

January 20, 2017

Sean Spicer January 20, 2017

July 21, 2017

Donald Trump
Sarah Sanders July 21, 2017

July 1, 2019

Stephanie Grisham July 1, 2019

April 7, 2020

Kayleigh McEnany April 7, 2020

January 20, 2021

Jen Psaki January 20, 2021

May 13, 2022

Joe Biden
Karine Jean-Pierre May 13, 2022

Current

Secrets behind the White House Press Secretaries: Karine Jean-Pierre, Jen Psaki & Kayleigh McEnany

We will now share with you the latest news and personal details of the last three White House Press Secretaries, including details about their families, salaries, net worth and more.

Former Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany

During the 2016 presidential election, Kayleigh McEnany gained notoriety for her unwavering support for Donald Trump. Her pro-Trump stance drew widespread national attention. McEnany, a former CNN contributor, has been the Republican National Committee’s national spokesperson since 2017.

Kayleigh McEnany
Kayleigh McEnany served as the 33rd White House press secretary for the Trump administration from April 2020 to January 2021. Credits to: abcnews.go.com

Her confident demeanor and bold demeanor have never failed to impress her peers. She is a highly educated woman with degrees from the prestigious University of Oxford and Harvard Law School who commands the respect and admiration of her colleagues in the field of journalism.

McEnany, who has been interested in politics since high school, has emerged as one of the most well-known faces in the field of political journalism. She has worked for politicians such as Adam Putnam, Yom Gallagher, and George W. Bush, in addition to being one of Trump’s earliest vocal supporters.

Kayleigh McEnany Early Life 

McEnany was born in Tampa, Florida, on April 18, 1988, and grew up there. She is the daughter of Michael and Leanne McEnany, who own a roofing business.

McEnany went to the private Catholic prep school Academy of the Holy Names in Tampa. After she graduated, she went to Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in Washington, D.C., and majored in international politics.

She also went to St Edmund Hall, Oxford, to study abroad. Nick Thomas-Symonds, who is now a British Labour politician, taught her about politics while she was at Oxford. McEnany worked as a producer on the Mike Huckabee Show for three years after she graduated from Georgetown.

McEnany
Kayleigh McEnany graduating from Harvard Law School
Source: Twitter

She went to the University of Miami School of Law for her first year (1L), then switched to Harvard Law School for her second year. McEnany got the Bruce J. Winick Award for Excellence, which is a scholarship given to students in the top 1% of their class at the Miami School of Law. In 2016, she got her degree from Harvard.

Personal Life

Kayleigh McEnenay is 34 years old and in November 2017, McEnany married Major League Baseball pitcher Sean Gilmartin. Blake, their first child, was born in November 2019.

Kayleigh McEnany selling Tampa House
Kayleigh McEnenay’ house in Tampa. Credits to: tampabay.com

McEnany had a double mastectomy to prevent getting breast cancer in 2018. This was because she had a BRCA mutation that made her very likely to get breast cancer.

Kayleigh McEnenay Net Worth

McEnenay Net Worth is $500 thousand. She made $183,000 per year when she was the White House Press Secretary.

Kayleigh and Sean bought a house in Tampa, Florida, for $650,000 in 2017. They put the house on the market for $1.1 million in April 2021.

Reasons for stepping down as White House Press Secretary and other Noteworthy Events

“As a woman of faith, as a mother of baby Blake, as a person who meticulously prepared at some of the world’s hardest institutions, I never lied. I sourced my information” – Kayleigh McEnenay

McEnany declared Trump’s victory early in the 2020 presidential election, while ballots were still being counted. She spread false claims of fraud after Joe Biden won the election and President Donald Trump refused to concede. McEnany falsely claimed on November 20, 2020, that Trump was not given an “orderly transition of power”.

Following the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol, Forbes writer Randall Lane warned corporations against hiring McEnany or others: “Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie. We’re going to scrutinize, double-check, investigate with the same skepticism we’d approach a Trump tweet. Want to ensure the world’s biggest business media brand approaches you as a potential funnel of disinformation? Then hire away”.

Kayleigh McEnany resigned as White House Press Secretary after it was officially announced that Biden had won the 2020 election.

Former Press Secretary Jen Psaki 

Jennifer Rene Psaki (born December 1, 1978) is a political advisor from the United States who served as the 34th White House Press Secretary from 2021 to 2022. She previously worked in the Obama administration as the White House Deputy Press Secretary (2009), the White House Deputy Communications Director (2009–2011), the United States Department of State spokesperson (2013–2015), and the White House Communications Director (2015–2017). From 2017 to 2020, Psaki was a CNN political contributor.

Jen Psaki
Jennifer Rene Psaki as White House Press Secretary Credits to: cnn.com

Psaki left CNN in November 2020 to join the Biden-Harris transition team. Psaki was named White House Press Secretary for the Biden administration 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 the President David Axelrod on May 6, 2021, Psaki stated that she would leave her position as press secretary “in about a year from now”.

Jen Pskai’s Early Life

Psaki was born in 1978 in Stamford, Connecticut to psychotherapist Eileen (née Dolan) Medvey and Dimitrios “James” R. Psaki, a retired real estate developer whose grandfather emigrated from Greece in 1904 and whose grandmother was of Irish descent. In 1976, her parents married. Psaki is also of Polish descent.

In 1996, Psaki 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 is a Chi Omega sorority member. Psaki spent two years on the William & Mary Tribe athletic team as a competitive backstroke swimmer.

Personal Life

Jen Psaki is 44 years old. Gregory Mecher is her husband. On May 8, 2020, the couple married at Woodlawn Farm in Ridge, Maryland. Gregory is a Democratic political aide who most recently served as chief of staff to Massachusetts Rep. Joe Kennedy III.

jen-psaki-husband
Jennifer Rene Psaki and her husband Credit to: houseandwhips.com

The couple met while Mecher was a deputy finance director at the DCCC and Psaki was handling media for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and then-DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel. Both had busy schedules, but they occasionally found themselves at DCCC headquarters at the same time.

Mecher invited Psaki to dinner via email. She quickly responded with a yes. During dinner, they discussed their parents and siblings, as well as their high school swimming careers. In March 2009, Mecher proposed at home.

Jen and her husband are the parents of two children. One of her daughters, Genevieve (Vivi) Mecher, rose to prominence after being photographed with then-US President Barack Obama while crawling on the floor of the presidential office.

Jen Psaki’s Net Worth

Jen Psaki’s net worth is $2 million as of 2022.

Psaki is entitled to a $180,000 salary for her work at the White House. Jen Psaki’s employment will include subsidized electricity, 24-hour security, and other perks. She earns money from her real estate investments in addition to her primary job.

She currently owns seven properties totaling approximately $30.65 million in value. Jen is also expected to earn up to $14 million with MSNBC in the future, which will significantly increase her wealth. However, her net worth remains at $2 million for the time being.

Reasons for stepping down as White House Press Secretary and other Noteworthy Events

“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”. – Joe Biden

Jen Psaki served as the Biden administration’s White House press secretary. President Joe Biden (D) announced on May 5, 2022, that Psaki would resign as White House Press Secretary on May 13, 2022, and that Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre would take over the position.

Psaki was a member of the Biden Transition Team, where she oversaw the confirmations process. She previously worked in communications for President Barack Obama’s administration.

Axios reported on April 1 that Psaki was in talks to host a show on MSNBC following her resignation.

Psaki’s departure came as no surprise. She previously stated that she planned to stay in charge for about a year before leaving to spend more time with her two young children. She has held the position since Biden’s inauguration in January 2021.

Upon her departure, Biden said in a statement: “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”.

Current White House Press Secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre

Karine Jean-Pierre (born August 13, 1977) has been the White House Press Secretary since May 13, 2022, succeeding Jen Psaki, making her the first black and openly LGBTQ Press Secretary. She previously worked as Psaki’s Deputy Press Secretary from 2021 to 2022. During the 2020 presidential campaign, she was the chief of staff for US Vice President candidate Kamala Harris.

JEAN-PIERRE-BRIEFING
Current White House Press Secretary: Karina Jean-Pierre Credits to: npr.org

“I understand how important it is for so many people out there, so many different communities. … I stand on their shoulders, and I have been throughout my career” – Karine Jean-Pierre

Jean-Pierre previously worked as a senior advisor and national spokeswoman for MoveOn.org, as well as a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC. She is also a former Columbia University lecturer in international and public affairs.

In regards to the new White House Press Secretary, Biden said: “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”.

Karine Jean-Pierre’s Early Life

Jean-Pierre was born on August 13, 1977, in Fort-de-France, Martinique, to Haitian parents. She has two younger siblings, with whom she was raised in New York City’s Queens Village neighborhood since the age of five. Her mother was a home health aide who was involved in her Pentecostal church, and her father was a taxi driver.

Because both parents worked most of the week, Jean-Pierre was frequently in charge of her younger siblings. Jean-Pierre graduated in 1993 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. She earned her MPA from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) in 2003, where she served in student government and decided to pursue a career in politics.

Persona Life

Jean-Pierre is 45 years old. As of 2020, Jean-Pierre lives with her partner, CNN correspondent Suzanne Malveaux, and their daughter in the area around Washington, D.C. She speaks English, French, and Haitian Creole perfectly well.

KARINE-SUZANNE and partner
Karine Jean-Pierre and her partner Credits to: the-sun.com

Jean-Pierre said in an interview about her job as an openly gay worker in the White House during Barack Obama’s time in office, “It’s great that I wasn’t the only one; I was just one of many. President Obama didn’t hire LGBT people to work for him. Instead, he hired people with experience who also happen to be LGBT. It has been a great honor to serve and work for President Obama, where you can be openly gay. It felt great to be part of a government that cares about LGBT issues”.

Moving Forward, the first book by Jean-Pierre, came out in 2019. WJLA-TV says it is “part memoir and part call to arms”. In it, she talks about her personal and professional life and urges people to get involved in politics.

Karine Jean-Pierre’s Net Worth

It is thought that Karine Jean-Pierre has a net worth of $14 million.

Karine Jean-Pierre just spent a whopping $145,000 on a brand-new Jaguar. Karine Jean-Pierre has a Bentley and a BMW as well. The value of all the cars that Karine Jean-Pierre owns is well over $2.5 million. A few of Karine Jean-cars Pierre’s are shown below:

  • Range Rover Sport – $210,000 USD
  • Jaguar XE – $80,000 USD
  • Lexus ES – $135,000 USD
  • BMW X1 – $72,000 USD

Homes that Karine Jean-Pierre owns:

  • Villa in California: $3 Million
  • Flat in Washington: $1 Million
  • Villa in Denver: $2 Million
  • Mansion in Wisconsin: $5 Million

Karine Jean-Pierre can get a $185,000 salary package as the White House Press Secretary. Karine Jean-Pierre also gets a travel allowance and a house rent allowance on top of this salary. As part of her job, Karine Jean-Pierre will also get free electricity, security that’s on all the time, and other perks.

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