Sometimes getting a job in politics doesn’t mean that your salary will be the best – even at a high position. But it definitely will keep you living a comfortable life. Because taxpayers money goes towards the salaries of elected officials, their paychecks can be found in the public record.
We looked at all of the salaries of the staff and employees of the White House to see what they get paid. All information on this list is accurate to July 2020 and was updated on October 14, 2020.
Being the president does have its benefits, like having a nice financial income. A $400,000 annual salary is quite the perk, coupled with the fact that they also get $50,000 as an expense allowance, $100,000 for travelling and $19,000 for any kind of entertainment.
Since George W. Bush took office in 2001, every president has had this amount of spending money and annual salary, according to CNBC.
Just like the vice president before him, Joe Biden, Mike Pence makes $230,700 annually as vice president, this figure has been the same since 2010.
In 2019 he was due for a raise at 243,500 dollars. He hasn’t gotten his raise since the government was shut down at that point in time. The veep said jokingly that he buys his suits 2 for one even though he has a generous paycheck.
Here’s a difficult job that comes with a salary to match. The Chief of Staff before Meadows was Mick Mulvaney who was one of the few White House staff members to make more than $200,000 a year.
Meadows is the fourth chief of staff since the newest president was elected and got his title in 2020.
$183,00 annually is a common salary in the White House with 22 different staff with that income. Navarro is the man who’s involved in the trade and manufacturing policies and has been on the cabinet for many years.
The Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy was created in 2017 and Navarro heads it. He’s been in-charge since its conception so there are no predecessors to compare his salary with.
The First Lady will always get her own staff and whoever they choose to lead it gets a nice salary. Stephanie Grisham is currently Chief of Staff to the First Lady and took the position after Lindsay Reynolds left.
Before she took this position, Grisham had other roles in the White House like a press secretary. Before Lindsey Reynolds was Chief of Staff Christina Tchen was and took home a tidy $176,461.
The National Economic Council was created in 1993 and since then several people have taken the position of deputy director who earns at least $120,000 annually.
The newest person to fill that role is Francis J. Brooke Jr. who earns a tidy $158,000. Andrew Olmem, who had his position before him earned $10,000 more.
On the salary report, Larry Kudlow is listed as the assistant to the president for economic policy. He’s also the National Economic Council’s director and has had that job since 2018.
Annually Kudlow earns $183,000 for helping the president with his economic policies. The director before him was Jeff Zients who earned slightly less at $176,461.
Even the White House needs a talented information technology staff and IT director. Roger L. Stone is the current director and earns $168,000 per year.
Chris Herndon previously held the position before and was the second man to have the position since its conception in 2016. Herndon earned $121,752 annually.
The director of White House travel office is quite the job, they are responsible for making sure the entire White House press corps members that follow around officials have accommodations wherever they go.
Bethany Pritchard has been the director since 2019 after being a staff assistant for two years. Her salary was raised this year making it $106,000 from $92,400 annually.
The director of stenography is allegedly not pushed by any kind of political alignment. Dominique currently holds the position and earns 98,900 per year.
Stenographers will take notes on every meeting that takes place in the White House and hand over transcripts to the press. She previously earned 95,500 before her raise.
The role of White House social secretary has been called the “least controversial” job in the building by the Washington Post. It’s a role that involves planning and executing the many social events hosted by the White House.
First lady Melania Trump chose Anna “Rickie” Niceta as social secretary because of her two decades of experience as an event planner. Niceta makes $168,000 a year in the role, compared to the $119,723 made by Deesha Dyer in 2016 under Obama.
President Trump has been praised for keeping his White House payroll lean and that extends to two of his closest advisors. The president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, hold official titles as advisor and senior advisor to the president, respectively.
They are both listed in the White House salary report but there is a nice, round $0 next to each of their names, as both have chosen to forgo a paycheck for their role.
There are several jobs that fall under the umbrella of Oval Office operations and Molly Michael (pictured on the left) has one of the most important. Her official title is deputy assistant to the president and executive assistant to the president and that includes a salary of $158,000 per year for essentially being Trump’s right-hand woman.
Michael got a significant raise in 2020; her 2019 salary was $120,000. There are eleven other people in Trump’s administration with executive assistant titles, each of whom makes between $48,000 and $77,700 per year.
Another member of the $183K club is Robert C. O’Brien, who took over as national security advisor from John Bolton in September 2019.
The job involves reporting to the president on matters of national security and serving on the national security council, which produces sensitive intelligence information. Under Obama, Susan Rice was making $176,461 per year in the same position, as of 2016.
Who knew calligraphy was such a lucrative skill? There are three calligraphers on staff at the White House, the lowest-paid of whom makes $84,400 per year.
Lee Ann Clark is chief calligrapher and brings home a tidy $109,200 for her beautiful writing, which adorns official invitations, certificates, name cards, programs and other documents. Obama also had three calligraphers on staff, with the top scribe earning $100,110 in 2016.
When the president needs to fill a position, he will turn to the folks inside the Presidential Personnel Office. This office is responsible for vetting possible candidates and making recommendations to the president for potential appointments.
John D. McEntee II (pictured on the right, with Molly Michael) makes $183,000 a year as director of the PPO since assuming the role in February 2020. Under Obama, Rodin Mehrbani held the role and made $172,200 in 2016.
How much is it worth to provide legal advice to the president on matters of ethics? A pretty penny, it turns out
Trump has two attorneys on payroll with the title of ethics counsel, the highest-earning of whom is Monica Ashar. Obama also had two ethics counsel attorneys on staff, the highest-paid of whom made $123,406 in 2016.
Trump’s current mouthpiece for the media, Kayleigh McEnany, is one of the highest-paid members of the White House staff. In case you hadn’t noticed, press secretary is a very tough gig, which is why she’s the fourth person to hold that position since Trump took office in 2017
Sean Spicer abruptly resigned in 2017 and his replacement, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, resigned in 2019, paving the way for Stephanie Grisham and then McEnany, who took on the role in April 2020. In 2016, Obama’s Press Secretary, Josh Earnest, made $176,461.
The communications staff is an important part of any political office, especially the White House. Julia Hahn started her career at “The Laura Ingraham Show” and Breitbart News before joining the White House working under Steve Bannon.
The 29-year-old earns $158,000 in the deputy assistant to the president and deputy director of communications role. In Obama’s White House, Jennifer Psaki was director of communications and she made $174,714 in 2016.
The White House is one of the most famous residences in the world and sees many tourists every year. The White House Visitors Office is responsible for maintaining the facility and hosting tours.
Dana Hurtik worked as acting director of the White House Visitors Office before becoming the director and makes a salary of $106,000 in 2020. Ellie Schafer held that job under Obama and made $116,679 in 2016 for her efforts.
There is a lot to capture on video when you’re working at the White House and the Trump administration keeps two videographers on staff. Samuel Brown, who is not pictured below, is the White House’s senior videographer and makes $80,000 a year, while another videographer gets paid $72,700
In the Obama White House, Hope Hall was the sole videographer on staff and she was paid $76,095 in 2016 for filming the president’s biggest moments.
Trump has three speechwriters listed on staff, two of whom are paid $135,000, which is the highest salary of that set of employees.
Brittany Baldwin and Theodore Royer each earn that paycheck for making sure the president has thoughtful remarks to deliver at his many speaking engagements. Obama had nine speechwriters on staff, who ranged in salary from $42,613 to $176,461 per year, as of 2016.
Kathleen M. Porter started as a White House intern in 2019 before moving to her current role.
In 2016, Obama’s West Wing receptionist was Leah Katz-Hernandez, and she pulled down $48,000.
Many White House staffers have the title of assistant to the president, but only Kellyanne Conway can also be called senior counselor. Conway announced she was leaving the White House at the end of August 2020 despite remaining a public figure in the president’s envoy this fall.
She’s been with Trump since the early days of his campaign and has been rewarded for her hard work, taking home a salary of $183,000 per year. Obama didn’t have a staff position called senior counselor, so it’s difficult to compare her salary to previous advisors but it’s obvious that Trump values Conway’s role in his staff as she’s one of its highest-paid members.
Pat Cipollone’s background is in commercial litigation. As a devout Catholic, he helped Laura Ingraham convert to the religion in 2002.
Cipollone became counsel to the president in 2018 and gained national attention as Trump’s lead attorney during the president’s impeachment trial. Cipollone’s role earns him an annual salary of $183,000, which is among the highest on staff.