Biden Officially Announces New Chief Of Staff

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Diana Glebova White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden officially announced the appointment of Jeff Zients as his new chief of staff on Friday following the resignation of Ron Klain, marking the biggest change in the president’s staff since he took office.

Zients, who is Biden’s former Coronavirus response coordinator, will begin in his new position next week, the president said in a statement.

Prior to working in the White House, Zients held leadership positions at several healthcare companies that were forced to pay fines related to alleged Medicare and Medicaid fraud, according to the American Prospect. He also helped launch former President Obama’s Healthcare.gov rollout. (RELATED: Biden’s Reported New Chief Of Staff, Jeff Zients, Linked To Allegations Of Fraud And Questionable Business Practices)

Klain served as Biden’s chief of staff since the president was sworn into office, but since the midterms, had been telling those close to him that he’s ready to “move on,” senior administration officials told The New York Times. He was seen as one of the most important figures in the administration, with some Republicans calling him a virtual “prime minister.”

WASHINGTON, DC – JUNE 30: White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain attends an event with governors of western states and members of the Biden administration cabinet June 30, 2021 in Washington, DC. U.S. President Joe Biden addressed the combination of drought, heat and wildfires currently impacting the western portion of the U.S. during his remarks at the event. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

In his statement, Biden first offered praise for Klain, saying the former chief of staff has “once-in-a-generation talent with a fierce and brilliant intellect” as well as a “big heart.”

“Working together, we have made incredible progress fighting COVID, reviving our economy, rebuilding our infrastructure, and winning the confirmation of almost 100 federal judges, including the first Black woman on the United States Supreme Court. We have taken big steps to tackle climate change, advance civil rights, and address student debt. We’ve been reasserting America’s place in the world, and maybe most important of all – restoring faith in our democracy,” Biden said of his working relationship with Klain.

Biden then expressed optimism for Zients taking over for his predecessor.

“I’m confident that Jeff will continue Ron’s example of smart, steady leadership, as we continue to work hard every day for the people we were sent here to serve,” he said.

Klain has yet to announce where he is headed next.