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Melania Trump's chief of communications Stephanie Grisham picked as next White House press secretary and communications director

Key Points
  • First lady Melania Trump's chief spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, has been tapped to become the next White House press secretary and communications director, the first lady announced Tuesday.
  • Melania Trump added that she is "excited to have Stephanie working for both sides of the @WhiteHouse."
  • In a text message, Grisham confirmed to CNBC that she will still be working for the first lady even as she takes on her new roles.
Stephanie Grisham, press secretary and communications director for U.S. First Lady Melania Trump, looks on during a Congressional Picnic in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, June 21, 2019.
Chris Kleponis | Bloomberg | Getty Images

First lady Melania Trump's chief spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, has been tapped to replace Sarah Huckabee Sanders as the next White House press secretary, the first lady announced Tuesday.

Grisham, who had served as the East Wing press secretary since March 2017, will also become the White House communications director, according to the first lady's tweet.

The first lady said in a tweet that she and President Donald Trump "can think of no better person to serve the Administration & our country."

Melania Trump added that she is "excited to have Stephanie working for both sides of the @WhiteHouse."

In a text message, Grisham confirmed to CNBC that she will still be working for the first lady even as she takes on her new roles.

Trump praised Grisham in remarks to reports in the Oval Office later Tuesday. "She's here, she knows everybody, she actually gets along with the media very well," Trump said. "I think she's going to be fantastic."

Grisham will be taking over for Sanders, who will be departing as White House press secretary at the end of June. Sanders, who had been part of Trump's 2016 campaign and a member of his administration's communications team from the start of his presidency. She said she wanted to spend more time with her family, but vowed to "continue to be one of the most outspoken and loyal supporters of the president and his agenda."

Sanders and other current and former White House officials congratulated Grisham on Twitter.

Sanders had been criticized toward the end of her tenure for phasing out task of holding regular press briefings in the White House briefing room — a staple of the job going back decades. On the day Grisham was announced as her successor, Sanders had not briefed reporters in the White House briefing room in more than 100 days.

She had also been criticized for giving answers to the media that were considered misleading, untruthful or contradictory to remarks made by the president.

Friday is Sanders' last official day.

Former Fox News executive Bill Shine had served as Trump's last White House communications director. He resigned in March, after less than a year in that role, in order to join Trump's 2020 reelection campaign as an advisor.

Grisham had previously been a press aide to the Trump campaign, and had served in the White House as deputy to Sean Spicer, Trump's first press secretary. Spicer tweeted Tuesday that Grisham was a "fantastic choice to serve" as the new press secretary.

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