Melania Trump picks White House aide Stephanie Grisham as communications director

First Lady Melania Trump at President Trump's first address before a joint session of Congress on Feb 28, 2017.
First Lady Melania Trump at President Trump's first address before a joint session of Congress on Feb 28, 2017.PHOTO: THE WASHINGTON POST

WASHINGTON (WASHINGTON POST) - Melania Trump didn't have to look far to find her first communications director - she hired White House deputy press secretary Stephanie Grisham for the high-profile job, the First Lady's office announced on Monday (March 27).

Grisham was an early hire of now-President Donald Trump during his campaign, and she headed the travelling press team before the election.

Her hire could signal that the First Lady may be moving to embrace her role, something she has shown relatively little interest in doing in the early weeks of her husband's administration.

She lives in Manhattan where her son Barron attends school, and she plans to move to Washington once the school year is finished.

The First Lady has said she wants to use the powerful platform to combat cyber-bullying and to promote women's issues, and in a statement announcing the hire, indicated that she was preparing to become more publicly active."Stephanie is a wonderful addition to the team," Melania Trump said in a statement.

"She brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the job, and will be an incredible asset to my office as we build out our agenda, preserve our country's rich traditions, and serve the American people."

In the statement, Grisham declared herself honoured. "Mrs Trump's life story is an inspiration to millions of mothers and female entrepreneurs, and to me personally," she said.

"I deeply respect and admire her commitment to our country, her family, and to the important role of the First Lady. I look forward to helping her communicate her unifying message of kindness and empowerment."

Melania Trump's East Wing hires have included Lindsay Reynolds as chief of staff, Anna Cristina Niceta Lloyd as White House social secretary, and Stephanie Winston Wolkoff as a senior adviser.