Data provided to CNN report that 46% of the transition team staff are people of color, with 41% of senior staff members identifying as people of color. Fifty-two percent of the transition team are women, 53% of senior staff are women, according to the report. Ted Kaufman, co-chair of the Biden-Harris transition told CNN the diversity is the result of months-long work which included an “unrelenting commitment to diversity.”
In the coming weeks, the president-elect is expected to roll out cabinet picks and the diversity of the transition team may be an indication Biden is leaning into a campaign promise to have an administration that will “look like America.”
His first step of keeping this pledge was selecting Kamala Harris as his running mate. Vice president-elect Harris is the first woman, first Black and first South Asian person to ever be elected to the role.
President-elect Biden announced Ron Klain as his chief of staff last Wednesday (November 11). Klain, a long time adviser to Biden, assisted in the ebola health crisis back in 2014. Nine out of thirteen members of Biden’s coronavirus task force are people of color and five are women. The transition team announced its 500-person agency review team is made up of 40% people who “represent communities historically underrepresented in the federal government,” including people of color and people who identify as LGBTQ+.
The General Services Administration has not recognized Joe Biden as the winner of the election, but Kaufman said the team is forging ahead, “full speed ahead to Inauguration.”
He added, “our group of leaders and staff are reflective of America–– upholding President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris’ belief that through diverse voices we can develop and implement a policy vision to tackle our nation’s toughest challenges.”