The First Lady Tweet
First lady Melania Trump announced Grisham had been named press secretary Tuesday afternoon.
“I am pleased to announce @StephGrisham45 will be the next @PressSec & Comms Director! She has been with us since 2015 – @potus & I can think of no better person to serve the Administration & our country. Excited to have Stephanie working for both sides of the @WhiteHouse. #BeBest
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) June 25, 2019”
Grisham will continue to help with media and incoming requests East Wing duties even as she takes over as both press secretary and White House communications director. The latter position has been empty since March.
After Trump’s inauguration, Grisham initially worked as a deputy to then-press secretary Sean Spicer before joining the East Wing in March 2017 as Melania Trump’s communications director and was later promoted to deputy chief of staff for communications.
Ari Fleischer, a former press secretary for President George W. Bush, wrote in an email. “Juggling all three jobs is a bit too much, but in reality, I doubt she’ll be the communications director.”
“No one has yet to play that role in the Trump White House and I have a hard time seeing anyone truly playing it given how the president communicates.”
Grisham Career in Arizona Republican politics
Ms. Grisham, 42, was born in Arizona, where she worked in Republican politics before joining the Trump campaign. In 2013, she was charged with driving under the influence, speeding and driving with an invalid license. The charges were reduced in 2014 to reckless driving, according to court records.
Ms. Grisham was pulled over again in Arizona in December 2015 and charged with driving under the influence. She pleaded guilty, was fined and ordered into a treatment program, according to court records. Ms. Grisham said on Tuesday that she had completed what she described as a safety class and paid the fines, and that she disclosed the episodes to the White House before going to work there.
Since arriving, her enthusiasm for serving in the White House has also landed her in the cross hairs of ethics experts: The Office of Special Counsel warned her last July that tweeting a Trump campaign slogan was a violation of the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal employees from engaging in political activities while they are on the job.
Before joining the Trump campaign, Grisham worked on now-Sen. Mitt Romney’s (R-Utah) 2012 presidential campaign, owned an Arizona public relations firm and also worked as a spokeswoman for Arizona state House Republicans. She acted as a spokeswoman for then-Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne (R) and state House Speaker David Gowan (R).
“She’s a great advocate for the person she’s working for. She’s very friendly easy to be around, and she’s very effective,” Horne told AZ Central. “She has good relationships with reporters. And she is very committed to her work.”
Grisham Controversy 2018
Grisham has developed a reputation as a defender of the first lady.
“It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House,” Grisham said in a statement.
She has fired back in the media over questions about Melania Trump’s wardrobe and made headlines in November 2018 when she publicly called for the resignation of Mira Ricardel, a top lieutenant of national security adviser John Bolton.