From the beginning of his campaign, President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to have a diverse staff, stating in his Nov. 7 speech in Delaware that "from the outset I wanted a campaign that represented America, and I think we did that. Now that's what I want the administration to look like."
Following through on his promise, Biden has developed a transition team that consists of 46% people of color and 52% women, according to data obtained by CNN. When looking specifically at his senior staff, people of color make up 41% of those leaders and women make up 53%.
On Tuesday, Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris tweeted out who will be part of their senior White House staff. Showing a diverse group of nine individuals, including four men and five women, Biden and Harris reminded the public again of their "commitment to building an administration that looks like America."
From Biden's deputy chief of staff to his director of oval office operations, meet the five high-ranking women who will be part of the Biden-Harris White House team.
Jennifer O'Malley Dillon, Deputy Chief of Staff
As Biden-Harris' campaign manager, Jennifer O'Malley Dillon was the first woman to lead a successful Democratic presidential campaign.
She joined Biden's campaign in March 2020, and was immediately forced to run operations remotely due to the coronavirus pandemic. Prior to Biden's campaign, the mom of three worked as the campaign manager for Beto O'Rourke's presidential campaign and she served as deputy campaign manager for President Obama's 2012 re-election. A graduate of Tufts University, O'Malley Dillon will now serve as Biden's deputy chief of staff, making this her first White House position.
Dana Remus, White House Counsel
Dana Remus, who served as general counsel to the Biden-Harris campaign, will now serve as Biden's White House Counsel.
A graduate of Harvard College and Yale Law School, Remus previously worked as general counsel for the Obama Foundation and served as deputy assistant to the president and deputy counsel for ethics during the Obama-Biden administration. Prior to her work in the Obama-Biden administration, Remus was a law professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law. She also worked as a clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. and Judge Anthony J. Scirica of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and she was an associate at the Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP law firm in New York.
In 2018, former president Barack Obama officiated her wedding to Brett Holmgren, who was a national security aide in the Obama White House, according to The New York Times.
Julissa Reynoso Pantaleon, Chief of Staff to Dr. Jill Biden
Julissa Reynoso Pantaleon, a partner at the law firm Winston and Strawn LLP, has been appointed chief of staff to incoming first lady Jill Biden.
A graduate of Harvard University, the University of Cambridge and Columbia Law School, Reynoso Pantaleon, who was born in the Dominican Republic, previously served as U.S. ambassador to Uruguay and as deputy assistant secretary of state for the western hemisphere in the U.S. Department of State under the Obama-Biden administration. Currently, she serves as a trustee for New York-Presbyterian Hospital and for Columbia University, and she's on the Board of Directors of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law and the Truman National Security Project.
"For my chief of staff, it was important to find someone with deep experience and an understanding of government," Biden tells NBC News. "I wanted someone with heart and a passion for public service. I found all of that and more in Julissa — an accomplished diplomat, legal expert and strategist."
Julie Chavez Rodriguez, Director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs
Julie Chavez Rodriguez, who is the granddaughter of civil rights leader Cesar Chavez, has been appointed director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs in the Biden-Harris administration.
Serving as deputy campaign manager for the Biden-Harris campaign, Chavez Rodriguez previously worked as national political director and traveling chief of staff for Sen. Kamala Harris' presidential campaign in 2019. Prior to Harris' campaign, she also worked as California state director in her senate office.
Chavez Rodriguez, who graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, is also an Obama alum, having served as special assistant to the president and senior deputy director in the Office of Public Engagement under the Obama-Biden administration.
Annie Tomasini, Director of Oval Office Operations
Annie Tomasini, who currently serves as President-elect Biden's traveling chief of staff, has been appointed director of oval office operations.
Previously, Tomasini worked as deputy press secretary for Biden when he was vice president and press secretary for Biden when he was senator and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Tomasini, who started her career at one of New England's largest public relations firms, Rasky Partners, Inc., is a native of Massachusetts and a graduate of Boston University.
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