State Department's Jen Psaki to Head Up White House Communications Team

Posted: Feb 19, 2015 11:15 AM

State Department Spokeswoman Jen Psaki will be moving back to White House to head up President Obama's communications team, rounding out the final two years of his presidency. From AP

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki will become President Barack Obama's new communications director, filling a key slot as Obama embarks on the final two years of his presidency, White House officials said Thursday.

She replaces veteran Democratic media strategist Jennifer Palmieri, who is leaving the White House to join Hillary Rodham Clinton's likely presidential campaign. Psaki will step into her new role April 1.

In a statement, Obama embraced Palmieri as a "good friend" friend and praised her as a "brilliant and effective communications director and trusted adviser."

"I'd say Jen is irreplaceable - if Jen Psaki hadn't agreed to step in," Obama said. "I fully trust Jen - and I am thrilled she's agreed to come back to the White House as communications director."

Psaki has confirmed the news via Twitter:

Psaki has been at the State Department since President Obama was re-elected in 2012 and her tenure has been embroiled in controversy following the 9/11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi and the rise of Islamic terror around the world. Prior to her time at the State Department, she worked on the Obama For America campaign team and in the White House.

As noted by AP, Obama's current communication's director is leaving to join Hillary Clinton's pending 2016 run for president.