Evelyn S. Lieberman, American public affairs professional, Died at 71

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Evelyn May Simonowitz Lieberman was born on July 9, 1944, and died on December 12, 2015 from pancreatic cancer.

Evelyn was an American public affairs professional who, during the Clinton administration, became the first woman to serve as White House Deputy Chief of Staff, and was the first United States Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs.

From 2002 to 2015, Evelyn worked for the Smithsonian Institution, most recently as Senior Advisor and Assistant to the Secretary for external relations.

Lieberman first joined the White House in 1993 as Assistant to First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Chief of Staff.

Evelyn rose to the rank of Deputy Assistant to the President with the job title of Deputy Press Secretary.

On January 10, 1996, Chief of Staff Leon Panetta announced her appointment as Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff.

While another Deputy Chief of Staff managed policy and politics, Evelyn oversaw White House operations and administrative functions: the Office of Scheduling and Advance, the Office of Management and Administration, the Office of Presidential Personnel, and the Office of the Staff Secretary, as well as Director of Oval Office Operations.

Evelyn focussed on bringing discipline to the young, energetic White House staff; in announcing her appointment, Panetta said “she brings the perfect mixture of chicken soup and a kick in the butt that we need in this job.”

While serving as Deputy Chief of Staff, Evelyn, with the approval of Panetta, transferred Monica Lewinsky-the former intern later found to have had an inappropriate relationship with the President-out of the White House into the United States Defense Department Public Affairs office.

In subsequent grand jury testimony, Lieberman recalled removing Lewinsky for “spending too much time around the West Wing.”

Evelyn was married to attorney Edward H. Lieberman.

Evelyn May Simonowitz Lieberman passed away at age 71 in December 2015 from pancreatic cancer.


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