Jeff Zients, the White House’s Covid-19 czar, speaks during a press conference at the White House to discuss the pause in the release of the Johnson & Johnson Janssen Covid-19 vaccine on April 13, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images
Jeff Zients will serve as President Joe Biden’s next chief of staff, according to media reports Sunday.
Zients, who helped lead the Biden administration’s response to Covid-19 and execute its ambitious vaccination campaign, left the White House briefly in April before returning in the fall to help current chief of staff Ron Klain prepare for a turnaround in the administration after the midterm elections.
Klain, a longtime adviser to President Joe Biden, supported Biden in his 2020 campaign and has helped run the Biden administration since he was elected to office. After November’s midterm elections and two eventful years in the White House, Klain told colleagues he was ready for something different, the Washington Post reported.
Klain previously served as Biden’s chief of staff during former President Barack Obama’s first term and has worked with Biden since his run for president in 1987. In contrast, Zients has spent most of his career in the private sector and first made his foray into politics during the Obama administration.
Although Zients has a relatively limited political background compared to Klain, he is the “chief implementer” and “engages deep loyalty” from his colleagues, the Post reported.
A White House spokesman did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment.