Stephen Benjamin; White House; President Joe Biden
As senior advisor to President Joe Biden and the new director of the Office of Public Engagement, Stephen Benjamin is the most senior Black man working inside the White House.
It’s a public-facing job that Benjamin, who was the first Black mayor of South Carolina’s capital city, tells theGrio he is “thankful” for because the job goes beyond serving the United States at the pleasure of the president. It also allows him to serve as a liaison between the Biden-Harris administration and local communities, especially Black communities.
“I enjoy this role in the White House,” said Benjamin, who served 12 years as mayor of Columbia. “Every single day really has been a blessing.”
He admits, however, that working in the chaos of Washington, D.C., politics has been an adjustment as the new head of the White House’s public engagement team. The role was previously held by Keisha Lance Bottoms, the former mayor of Atlanta.