Friday, July 01, 2011

White House Salary Report: First Male Social Secretary Earns Less Than Female Predecessor

White House releases annual Salary Report to Congress...
President Obama and First Lady Obama broke the proverbial glass ceiling when they named Jeremy Bernard as their Social Secretary last February, the first man to hold the position in more than 200 years of White House history. Bernard makes $118,00 annually, according to the 2011 Annual Report to Congress on White House Staff, released today. His predecessor, Julianna Smoot, earned $150,000 annually. A required report each year since 1995, this year's document lists the title and salary for 454 employees. (Above: Bernard with the President at the 2011 Easter Egg Roll)

Bernard is one of 141 White House employees who earn six figures annually, with 21 earning the top pay rate of $172,200. Bernard also holds the title of Special Assistant to the President, and he officially took up his post on St. Patrick's Day, after working with Smoot to learn the ropes. Bernard also enjoys the distinction of being the first openly gay Social Secretary in White House history; read more about his background here.

Smoot was Social Secretary from March 2010 to March 2011, and departed to work on the President's 2012 re-election campaign as a Deputy Campaign Manager. Desiree Rogers, the Obamas' first Social Secretary, departed the White House in late March 2010, and made $113,000 per year. Rogers was the first-ever African American Social Secretary in White House history. She is now the CEO of Johnson Publishing Company, based in Chicago, Illinois.

Among the top earners listed in the Report are the President's Chief of Staff, William M. Daley; Valerie Jarrett and David Plouffe, who both hold the title Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor; Melody Barnes, Chair of the Domestic Policy Council; and Nancy Ann DeParle, Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff, among others. Mrs. Obama's Chief of Staff, Tina Tchen, who also holds the title Assistant to the President, makes $172,200, as does Press Secretary Jay Carney.

Three employees, listed as Senior Policy Advisors, earn $0 annually, according to the Report. Among these is Jessica Schumer, daughter of New York Senator Charles E. 'Chuck' Schumer.

*Photo by Eddie Gehman Kohan/Obama Foodorama