Bidens hires Robert B. Downing to be the new White House chief bailiff


Downing previously worked for Maryland-based Susan Gage Caterers and prior to that he worked at the Reagan White House.

The Chief Bailiff of the White House manages the residence and works closely with the First Lady and her office. The Chief Bailiff manages the 55,000 square foot, six storey White House residence and supervises a permanent staff of approximately 100 people. The Chief Bailiff responds to all concerns of the President and the First Lady about their home, hires and fires staff, and manages funds allocated by Congress to operate the home, including the costs of heating, lighting , air conditioning and staff salaries.

The Bidens have sacked the chief White House bailiff, Timothy Harleth, who was installed by the Trumps on the day of the inauguration. The Bidens waited awkwardly at the front door of the White House on inauguration day before it opened, in a major breach of protocol.
Harleth was hired by Melania Trump in 2017 and came to the White House from the Trump International Hotel DC, where he was in charge of the rooms.
Harleth replaced Angella Reid, who had been hired during the Obama administration. Reid made history when she accepted the post in 2011 as the first woman to hold the post. She was previously the General Manager of the Ritz Carlton in Pentagon City, just outside Washington in the suburb of Virginia.

The position was previously non-partisan, with the chief bailiffs remaining from one administration to another. Gary Walters was Chief Bailiff from 1986 to 2007.


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