After Making History as Second Black Woman to Lead WH Press Briefing, Karine Jean-Pierre Poses with Judy Smith, First Black Woman to Hold the Position

Written by DeMario P. Smith
Published on 26th May 2021

Karine Jean-Pierre / Photo Credit: Nicholas Kamm / AFP via Getty Images

 Karine Jean-Pierre became the first Black woman to lead a White House Press Briefing in thirty years. After the press briefing, Jean-Pierre was photographed at the podium with her predecessor, Judy Smith, who was the former Press Secretary to President George Bush. Smith was the first Black woman in history to lead a Press Briefing at the White House in 1991. Also, Judy Smith was the inspiration for the character of Olivia Pope in the popular TV series Scandal.

 Before working at the White House, Jean-Pierre was a lecturer in International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. In addition, she was the Chief of Staff to Vice President Kamala Harris 2020 Presidential Campaign. In November 2020, Out Magazine lauded Jean-Pierre for being “the first Black person and first out lesbian to hold that position for a vice-presidential nominee.”

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