Meet The Mexican American Who’s Just As Cool As Her Bosses, The Obamas

Leah Katz-Hernandez is someone to look up to. The 28-year-old Mexican-Jewish-American Connecticut native went from White House intern to the official White House receptionist. Career goals much? Every person who enters the White House, from tourist to world leader, is greeted with a smile from Leah and a hello in sign language. Leah is the first deaf person to hold this position.

Leah Katz-Hernandez was born in Connecticut to a Jewish social worker mom, who is also deaf, and Mexican-American father who put himself through college to earn a PhD.

Leah Katz-Hernandez
Credit: leah.katzhernandez/Facebook

She credits her dad as one of the biggest inspirations in her life. She told Fox Latino, “My father was born in California, in the Los Angeles area. He grew up on horse ranches. He worked hard, put himself through college, and earned his PhD. He’s always taught me it’s very important to give back to your community.”

Leah got her first taste of politics when she was in college and volunteered in a presidential campaign. Look at how excited she was!

White House Receptionist
Credit : leahkh/Twitter

Even though she was a busy  college student with a job, she was so excited about President Obama’s vision that she got involved in his first presidential campaign as an unpaid volunteer. During the 2008 presidential election, she also started a bi-partisan blog called The Deaf Perspective. The blog was designed to “give both the deaf and hearing community a unique perspective on the political process” in the United States.

Her first visit to the White House was in 2010 – the same year she became a White House intern.

Leah Katz-Hernandez in front of White House
Credit: AttitudeLive/YouTube

She’s always been interested in politics and majored in government at Gallaudet University, the “only university designed to be barrier-free for deaf and hard of hearing students.” After graduating Magna Cum Laude in 2010, she interned at the White House in the Office of Public Engagement, was a fellow for the U.S. House of Representatives and worked in the non-profit sector.

In 2012, Leah scored a job on Obama’s reelection campaign and she remembers the first time he signed to her. Who knew he could sign, right?

Credit: bananadome / Tumblr

Yes, Obama’s that cool. Clearly, still enthusiastic about Obama and driven to become part of his administration, she headed to work at his reelection headquarters in Chicago. That’s when she first met him. “The room was chock-full of staff,” she told Fox News Latino. “The president walked in, and, as he walked by me, I thanked him. He signed, ‘Thank you back.” *Dying*

After Obama was reelected (?), Michelle Obama hired Leah as her press assistant and research associate.

Credit: Leah Katz-Hernandez / Facebook / The White House

The first time Michelle met Leah, she greeted her in sign. NBD, right?

Three years later, Leah got her a desk right by the Oval Office that she shares with her interpreter. Together, they welcome some of the most influential world leaders who come visit Mr. President.

Credit: nbclatino/Instagram

In 2015, she got a desk in the West Wing a few steps away form the Oval Office and became the receptionist of the White House. If you are wondering how she communicates over the phone or in person with those who don’t know sign language, she has access to an interpreter who works at her side when necessary. According to Katz-Hernandez, her job is to“make sure that everyone is happy, and everyone feels welcome and has a nice experience when they come into the West Wing lobby.” Some of her other tasks include being in charge of the White House guest book, managing the Roosevelt Room and the Ward Room and collecting cellphones before meetings with the president.

Her job is so legit, it came with its own acronym.

 Potus gif

Credit: WhiteHouse/Tumblr
Credit: WhiteHouse/Tumblr

So, you can call her…

Credit: WhiteHouse/Tumblr

Doesn’t she have the coolest boss?! ?

Leah says she wants “to show that deaf people can do anything.”

Credit: The Voice / NBC

Way to go, ROTUS!

READ: The Father Of Chicano Theater Just Received This Prestigious Honor From President Obama

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Here Are The Executive Actions That President Biden Is Signing His First Day In Office

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Here Are The Executive Actions That President Biden Is Signing His First Day In Office

Jim Lo Scalzo-Pool / Getty Images

President Joe Biden has a lot of work ahead of him and he is hitting the ground running. On his first day in office, President Biden has a series of executive actions he is signing to reverse a lot of the damage created by the Trump administration. Here are some of the things President Biden will do with these actions.

The border wall on the southern border is done, y’all.

President Biden is saving the taxpayers billions of dollars by halting the construction of President Trump’s border wall. The border wall is one of former President Trump’s several unfulfilled promises at the expense of the taxpayers.

Despite his unrelenting campaign, Mexico never paid a dime to the wall. President Biden’s action to halt the border wall is a humanitarian and conservationist move that will save billions of tax dollars. According to estimates, there would be $3.3 billion in unused funds in the projects accounts.

The emotionally devastating Muslim ban will finally come to an end.

Former President Trump famously put an end to travel from predominantly Muslim countries. The order arbitrarily excluded a group of people based on their religion. The order that has kept families apart for years is finally coming to an end thanks to President Biden.

President Biden’s ation will bring families together and safeguards the rights of religious freedom. The ban has kept spouses separated, children apart from parents, and caused real damage. There is more to be done to make up for the stain on American history and the action is the first step.

The Keystone XL Pipeline is toast.

We all remember the terrifying scenes of Native people being brutalized by federal officials under Trump’s command. President Biden will make sure that the permit for the pipeline is revoked and put an end to a project that has been devastating the Native community. Activists have been fighting for years to get this done.

Undocumented people will have to be included in census counts.

President Biden is getting rid of the Trump administration’s terrible policy of ignoring undocumented people in the census. There have been several arguments by officials that the move would work to undermine certain states. The policy would take federal money away from states that did not support the former president and have high undocumented populations.

President Biden is going to preserve DACA.

More than 600,000 people benefit from the Obama-era program. Former President Trump waged a war against DACA and Dreamers for political points. Most Americans support DACA and a pathway to citizenship for DACA beneficiaries. With the new executive action, President Biden will instruct the federal government to restore the program to its fullest.

There is still a lawsuit the Biden administration will have to fight. The lawsuit challenging DACA’s legality was filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

In total, President Biden will sign 17 executive actions that will roll back several issues created by the previous administration.

“Today, hours after taking the oath of office, President-elect Biden will take a historic number of actions to deliver immediate relief for families across America that are struggling in the face of converging crises. He will sign a combination of executive orders, memoranda, directives, and letters to take initial steps to address these crises, including by changing the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, providing economic relief, tackling climate change, and advancing racial equity,” reads a statement from the Biden-Harris Transition Team. “President-elect Biden will take action — not just to reverse the gravest damages of the Trump administration — but also to start moving our country forward. These actions are bold, begin the work of following through on President-elect Biden’s promises to the American people, and, importantly, fall within the constitutional role for the president.”

READ: President Joe Biden’s And Vice President Kamala Harris’ Inauguration Represented America

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President Joe Biden’s And Vice President Kamala Harris’ Inauguration Represented America

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President Joe Biden’s And Vice President Kamala Harris’ Inauguration Represented America

Rob Carr / Getty Images

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have been sworn in as the 46th president and the 49th vice president of the United States of America. The new administration has been sworn in and the inauguration was a beautiful representation of America with people of color and women taking center stage.

Lady Gaga kicked off the 59th inauguration by singing the national anthem.

In 2017, Lady Gaga famously participated in the Women’s March the day after former President Trump’s inauguration. Four years later, the singer proudly took to the Capitol to usher in the beginning of the Biden/Harris administration. Dressed in custom Schiaparelli, Lady Gaga performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” and left people speechless.

Vice President Kamala Devi Harris was sworn in by Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

This was a special moment. The first Latina to ever serve on the Supreme Court was the one to swear in the first woman, first Black, and first South Asian vice president. It was a historical moment that will forever change the United States.

Justice Sotomayor has made a name for herself in American pop culture because of her blistering dissents. As the first Latina on the Supreme Court, Sotomayor opened possibilities for Latinas. We basically watched one icon swear in another icon and it is everything.

The most exciting moment of the inauguration might have been Jennifer Lopez and her remix of an American classic.

Lopez sang “This Land Is Your Land” but added a special twist. During the song, Lopez stops and says, “Una nacion, bajo de dios, indivisible con libertad y justicia para todos.” Translated, she said, “One nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.” That’s right. The Puerto Rican pop superstar used her moment at the nation’s Capitol building to give a shout out to all the Latinos who call the U.S. home.

Of course, the most iconic moment was J.Lo shouting “Let’s get loud.”

We all know that song. We are all singing it now after reading those three words. It was truly one of the most impactful moments of her performance. Only an icon could turn “This Land is Your Land” into a greatest hits medley. We are all better for having witnessed it.

However, it was 22-year-old Amanda Gorman that stole the entire show.

The Youth Poet Laureate was chosen to speak at the inauguration and she youngest inaugural poet of all time. She joins the impressive ranks of Maya Angelou, Richard Blanco, and Elizabeth Alexander. Her poem, written right after the Capitol riot. It was relevant, poignant, and moving.

“We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,
Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.
And this effort very nearly succeeded.
But while democracy can be periodically delayed,
It can never be permanently defeated.”

And, of course, Joseph Robinette Biden became the 46th president of the United States of America.

“Few people in our nation’s history have been more challenged or found a time more challenging or difficult than the time we’re in now. A once-in-a-century virus that silently stalks the country,” President Biden said. “It’s taken as many lives in one year as America lost in all of World War II. Millions of jobs have been lost. Hundreds of thousands of businesses closed. A cry for racial justice, some four hundred years in the making moves us. The dream of justice for all will be deferred no longer.

“The cry for survival comes from the planet itself, a cry that can’t be any more desperate or any more clear. And now a rise of political extremism, white supremacy, domestic terrorism that we must confront and we will defeat.

“To overcome these challenges, to restore the soul and secure the future of America requires so much more than words. It requires the most elusive of all things in a democracy: unity, unity.”

Welcome to the White House President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.

READ: The TikToker Who Put Fleetwood Mac Back On The Charts Will Perform At The Inauguration’s Virtual Parade

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