Omarosa Manigault, former contestant on The Apprentice, to join Donald Trump's White House
U.S. president-elect will hold Jan. 11 press conference — his 1st since winning November's election
Omarosa Manigault is getting hired.
A memorable contestant in the first season of The Apprentice, Manigault is expected to join U.S. president-elect Donald Trump's White House staff, according to two people familiar with the decision. Her job is expected to focus on public engagement.
Manigault was Trump's director of African-American outreach during his presidential election campaign and has been working with his transition team. She is also a regular political commentator on CNN.
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"Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Trump," she said in an interview for a PBS Frontline documentary about the presidential campaign. "It is the ultimate revenge to become the most powerful man in the universe."
Manigault, who prefers to use only her first name, made it through nine weeks of The Apprentice before Trump directed his infamous tagline, "You're fired," at her. She was portrayed as a cut-throat contestant during the season. She returned to Trump's Apprentice franchise several times and has appeared on other reality TV shows.
Manigault said she has stayed close to Trump over the years.
2nd White House gig
Last month, she shepherded NFL legends Ray Lewis and Jim Brown into a Trump Tower meeting with the president-elect. Afterward, Lewis posted a photo of himself and Manigault on his Facebook page, writing, "Was great meeting Omarosa and the team ... very impressive and passionate."
This will be Manigault's second season at the White House. She worked in the office of former vice-president Al Gore during the Bill Clinton administration.
The Trump transition team did not respond to inquiries about Manigault's role. The two people familiar with the decision insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the hiring process publicly.
1st post-election news conference
Trump, meanwhile, has announced plans to hold his first news conference since winning the presidency.
The president-elect tweeted Tuesday night that he would have "a general news conference" on Jan. 11 in New York City. That's just nine days before he's set to be sworn into office.
I will be having a general news conference on JANUARY ELEVENTH in N.Y.C. Thank you.—@realDonaldTrump
Trump has already waited longer than any other president in the modern era to hold his first news conference. Most have held such events within days of their elections.
It's been several months since Trump held a formal news conference, although he has answered questions from reporters as recently as last week.
Trump has previously promised news conferences that have not materialized. He failed to follow through after promising to talk to reporters about his plans to limit conflicts of interest in mid-December.