Recently in Obama Administration Category

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Left to Right: Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Five Executive Producer Kristin Hahn, and actress Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston was in Washington, D.C. Monday promoting breast cancer awareness.

Dressed in a black turtleneck and jeans, the actress met Dr. Jill Biden, Second Lady of the United States, and Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, in Alexandria, Virginia (my hometown!).  Together they toured the breast cancer center at iNova Alexandria Hospital (where I used to be a candystriper).

The women then headed over to the Ronald Reagan Building for a reception and screening of Five, a Lifetime anthology of five short films that chronicle the experiences of five breast cancer patients. Jennifer executive produced the movie and directed one of the short films.  (Demi Moore and Alicia Keys also directed films.) 

Later that evening, Jennifer joined boyfriend Justin Theroux, Jeanne Tripplehorne (who plays an oncologist in Five), and Patricia Clarkson (who plays a cancer patient in Five) for dinner at Fiola Da Fabio Trabocchi on Pennsylvania Avenue.  Jennifer had the white truffle pasta.

 

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Sarah Jessica Parker

The President's Committee on Arts and Humanities just got a little more fashionable.  Sarah Jessica Parker and Vogue editor Anna Wintour are new members of the Committee.

Other celebs just named to the Committee are Forrest Whitaker, Alfre Woodard, Edward Norton and Yo-Yo Ma.

According to its website, the Committee works with "the three primary cultural agencies - National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) - to initiate and support key programs; to recognize excellence in the fields of arts and humanities; and to encourage private-public partnerships around those disciplines." 

The Committee was established in 1982.

We reported in the Daily Polichicks that when Hillary Clinton was asked by a Congolese student about Bill Clinton's opinion (intead of hers) on a Chinese loan to Congo, she responded, "Are you effing kidding me?! I'm Secretary of State, not Bill!"  That's not an exact quote, but whatever, close enough. 

If you're going to be a stickler for accuracy, maybe you should check out the Washington Post or some other publication that subscribes to the ethics of journalism and pays for fact checkers.  We report just enough to get by at a cocktail party.  Besides, if you were a guest at a cocktail party on your third or fourth mojito, well, then "are you effing kidding me?!" would be exactly what Hillary Clinton said. But we digress....

Anyhoo-  we can't really blame Hillary for being miffed if the questioner valued the opinion of the "man of the house" rather than that of "the little lady."  On the other hand, one never really knows why a question is being asked, so it's best not to make assumptions.  The questioner, who asked about Dikembe Mutombo's opinion as well as Bill Clinton's, may have wanted to know Bill's opinion simply out of curiosity or to see if it differed from Hillary's.  According to the Associated Press, the French speaking student who asked the question in English approached Hillary after the event was over and explained that he had actually intended to ask her for President Obama's opinion.

Here's the vid.  Watch and formulate your own opinion.

 

Follow Polichicks on Twitter at @polichicks.

 

Desiree Rogers Valerie Jarrett Capitol File.jpgWhite House Social Secretary, Desiree Rogers, and Special Advisor to President Obama, Valerie Jarrett, are featured on the cover of the June issue of Capitol File.  Read the cover story over here.


 


First Lady Michelle Obama was a hit at the Kennedy Center Spring Gala, receiving a standing ovation even though she never appeared on stage.  She enjoyed the event with her mother and longtime girlfriends Valerie Jarrett (Special Advisor to President Obama)  and Desiree Rogers (White House Social Secretary).  Gala guests included Vera Wang and Paris Hilton.

 

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Desiree Rogers in the East Room of the White House.  She is wearing Cartier earrings (We want, want WANT!) and a trench coat by Viktor & Rolf.

We've got some interesting dish on White house Social Secretary Desiree Rogers.  Like, when she plans a White House party, she has a lot more on her mind than just seating charts, what to wear and whether to go with cloth or paper napkins - she's thinking of how each event might extend the Obama presidency as a brand.  (Smart!) She has an after Weight Watchers figure (hate her!), impeccable taste, and - get this!- an ancestor who was a Creole voodoo priestess! (No, seriously.) 

How are we so smart?  Where do we get our secrets?  Why, from WSJ Magazine, of course!  Ms. Rogers is featured in the May issue.  So either pick up a copy or click on the links below to take a peek inside the magazine and her fabulous life.

You can read the WSJ magazine article about Desiree here.

You can view a slide show of Desiree-produced White House events here.

You can see who Desiree has friended here

You can check out Polichicks last profile on Desiree (including a CNN video interview with her) here

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The Washington social scene is abuzz about a new arrival in town: the fun and fabulous Desiree Rogers, who is The White House Social Secretary.  What do we know about Miss Rogers?  So glad you asked!  Because, as usual, we can't wait to tell. (And when we tell, we tell it all girlfriend!) So keep reading.

* Smart as a whip, Miss Rogers is a Wellesley grad and Harvard MBA

* She is fly from well-coiffed head to Jimmy Chooed toe (Check out her pic from a Vogue photoshoot above)

* She was appointed by a Republican Illinois governor to run the Illionois lottery, and she once served as an alternate delegate at the Republican National Convention

* She was once president of Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas in Chicago

* She passed on her brainy genes: daughter Victoria is a freshman at Yale 

* She prefers American designers

* She hails from New Orleans (A social secretary who totally gets mardi gras!  What could be more parfait?!)

* Her favorite expression is "laissez les bon temps rouler!" So let the good times roll, honey!

Want more scoop? 

Check out an interview with Miss Rogers in Vogue here.

Listen to an NPR interview with Miss Rogers here.

Watch a CNN interview with Miss Rogers below.

 

 

In case you missed it, here's the press conference at which President elect Barack Obama announced his selections for his national security team.  (He had the decency not to hold the conference during Tyra this time, thank the Lord.)

Warning:  The video is 27 minutes long, because each of Obama's nominees wanted to yap on the mike for a bit. (Hey, they are politicos, aren't they?)

The nominees make up a team diverse in race, sex, ideology, geography and political party affiliation.  Here's the scoop on them, pulled straight from an email sent by the Obama transition team:

Hillary Clinton, U.S. Senator from New York and former First Lady, will serve as Secretary of State.

Secretary Robert Gates, the current Secretary of Defense, will continue to serve in that role.

Eric Holder, former Deputy Attorney General and a former United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, will serve as Attorney General.

Janet Napolitano, Governor and former U.S. Attorney for Arizona, will serve as Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

Dr. Susan E. Rice, a Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Obama for America campaign, a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, will serve as Ambassador to the United Nations.

General Jim Jones, USMC (Ret), former Allied Commander, Europe, and Commander of the United States European Command, will serve as National Security Advisor.

 

Are we seriously doing a Meet and Greet to introduce you to Hillary Clinton?  Ummm... no.

What could we say about her that you don't already know anyway?  Married some guy named Bill?  Ran for president?  Put 18 million cracks in the proverbial glass ceiling?

(Uhh... you do know all of that don't you?)

Since we're doing Meet and Greets for members of Obama's new administration, we don't want to leave Hillary out even though she's already well known.  Internationally.  So we're doing this technical Meet and Greet for Hillary to mention just one little factoid:

  • Hillary has one thing in common with Barack: she's a tease.  First Obama teases that he's probably going to ask Hillary to serve as Secretary of State (Oh, Americans, let the anticipation excite you!) and then Hillary hints that she'll probably accept (Americans, work yourselves into a frenzy at the thought!).  Now the latest is that Hillary will accept.  So expect a formal announcement sometime after Thanksgiving that Barack has chosen Hillary to serve as our new Secretary of State.

 

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Barack Obama has appointed Jim Messina Deputy Chief of Staff.  He will serve with Mona Sutphen, who we already told you about over here.

So who's Jim Messina anyway? Keep reading to find out.

 

 

  • Like we said, Jim just scored a gig as Obama's Deputy Chief of Staff.

 

  • Jim is currently Director of Personnel for Obama's transition team.  Before that, he was national Chief of Staff for Obama's presidential campaign.

 

  • Prior to joining Team Obama, he was Chief of Staff to Sen. Max Baucus (D-Montana).  Baucus "loaned" Jim to Obama, but it looks like Obama won't give him back.  (Obama is a lot like our younger sister.)

 

  • Jim has also served as Chief of Staff to Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY).

 

  • Jim earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Montana.

 

  • Jim was born in Denver, Colorado and raised in Boise, Idaho.

 

  • His exercise of choice is running.  He runs every morning

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  • The good news is that he's single ladies!  The bad news is that he already has a girlfriend.

 

  • For more on Jim, here's an interview he did back in August on his role as Obama's campaign Chief of Staff. 

 

 

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Barack Obama recently appointed Mona Sutphen his Deputy Chief of Staff (along with Jim Messina, but more on him in a later post). 


Who is Mona Sutphen?  Keep reading for full scoop.


  • Mona currently serves on Obama's Transition team staff.  She is also Managing Director at Stonebridge International LLC, a strategic consulting firm based in Washington D.C.


  • She was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer from 1991 to 2000.  She spent the last two years of her service working on the National Security Council in the Clinton White House.


  • She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at Mount Holyoke College and a Master's degree at the presitigious London School of Economics. (Oh la la.)


  • She co-authored a book called The Next American Strategy with Nina Hachigian, a collegue from her days working on the National Security Council.   She talks about her book below.

 

Rahm Emanuel.jpgSome girls like bad boys, and apparently so does President elect Barack Obama.  He has selected Congressman Rahm Emanuel (D-IL) to serve as White House Chief of Staff in his administration.  Contrary to Obama's nice guy reputation for working across party lines, Emanuel is known to throw a partisan punch every now and again.

Here's the scoop on Emanuel:

 

  • At 48, he's a young cat as far as politicians go (DOB:November 29, 1959).

 

  • He represents the 5th district of Illinois (basically part of Chicago) in the U.S. House of Representatives.  He was elected in 2003.

 

  • He was Chairman of the D tripple C during the 2006 elections, when the Dems regained control of Congress.  He is currently Chairman of the Democratic Caucus, which makes him the 4th ranking Democrat in the House.

 

  • Prior to coming to Congress, he was managing director of an investment bank.  Before that, he worked in the Clinton White House.  He started in the White House as Clinton's political director, but his combative ways earned him a demotion to policy adviser(compliments of Hillary Clinton). Loyal and fiesty, he fought his way back to the top.

 

 

  • He graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1981 and got his master's in Speech and Communication from Northwestern University in 1985.

 

  • If you hear someone say, "Something's fishy around here," they may have just received a holiday gift from Rahm.  He's said to have once mailed a rotting dead fish to a frenemy.

 

  • He's no Rachael Ray.  While working at Arby's in high school, he cut his right middle finger badly and part of his finger had to be amputated.

 

  • He could be a Bruce Jenner though.  Or a J.Lo.  Like both celebrities, he's a triathlete. (In our book, triathlete = cray-zay.)

 

  • His father was a pediatrician and his mother, a former civil rights activist, used to own a rock club in Chicago.  Talk about cool mom!

 

 

  • He and his wife, Amy, have one son and two daughters.  

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