The White House Blog: Dr. Jill Biden

  • 2012: A Year in Photos

    The White House photo team has a front row view for all the events — both big and small — that take place at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., as well as on the road with the President, the Vice President and the First Family.

    Each January, Pete Souza, Chief Official White House Photographer and Director of the White House Photography Office, selects his favorite images from the past twelve months, and now, we're sharing them with you. Featuring exclusive perspectives of everything from Presidential trips and events to private moments between President Obama and his family, his staff and American citizens, this collection offers a unique view of 2012.

    See 2012: A Year in Photos

  • The Courage and the Strength

    Editor's note: Military Family Month reminds us to take a moment to reflect on the contributions and sacrifices of our military families. As President Obama said in his proclamation declaring November as Military Family Month, “When a young woman signs up to defend our Nation, her parents are enlisted as well. When a father deploys to a combat zone, his children are called to serve on the home front. And when the men and women of our military serve far from home, their families feel the strain of their absence.”

  • Tell Their Story Again

    Dr. Biden at Ceremonial Groundbreaking

    Dr. Jill Biden speaks at the Ceremonial Groundbreaking of The Education Center at The Wall on November 28, 2012. (Photo by Bill Petros)

    Yesterday, I was honored to meet Dr. Michael McClung, a Vietnam veteran and Gold Star dad. Dr. McClung is the father of United States Marine Corps Maj. Megan McClung, who became the first female Marine Corps officer to die in Iraq when her Humvee was struck by an IED on December 6, 2006.

    Along with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, members of Congress, military leaders and other Gold Star families, we gathered for the Ceremonial Groundbreaking of The Education Center at The Wall, a future national landmark that will bring to life the stories of the more than 58,261 Americans who lost their lives in the Vietnam War.

    Located on the National Mall, the Education Center will uniquely bridge past, present and future by connecting veterans from all eras to one another. In addition to Vietnam veterans, the Education Center will also serve as a memorial to the lives of service members lost in Afghanistan and Iraq.

  • Dr. Jill Biden Sponsors USS Delaware

    Dr. Jill Biden Sponsors USS Delaware

    Dr. Jill Biden speaks at a press conference with Secretary of the Navy Ray Maybus, Senator Tom Carper, and Delaware Lt. Governor Matt Denn, announcing the naming of the SSN 791 as the USS Delaware, in the Briefing Room at the Pentagon, in Arlington, Virginia, Nov. 19, 2012. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann) November 19, 2012.

    Earlier this week at the Pentagon, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus announced that the Navy’s next Virginia-class attack submarine will be named the USS Delaware – and that it will be sponsored by Dr. Jill Biden, a longtime Delaware educator and proud military mom.

    At the announcement, Secretary Mabus said the Navy names its ships for states and other places in America to serve as a visible representation of America in every port around the world and that there is “always a strong connection between the people of a state and the ship that bears its name.”

    “It's a special honor for me to sponsor this submarine, because I'm such a proud military mom,” Dr. Biden said. “Four years ago … I stood in Dover, Delaware, watching as our son, Beau, prepared to deploy to Iraq with the Delaware Army National Guard. I remember it like it was yesterday. And this year, I'm looking forward to standing with our son, Hunter, when he is commissioned as an ensign in the United States Navy.  He follows in the footsteps of two of his grandfathers, who have also served in the Navy.  

    Secretary Mabus also recognized Dr. Biden for her work with First Lady Michelle Obama on the Joining Forces initiative, “providing support and expanding opportunities, for veterans and active-duty personnel and their families.”

    Dr. Biden said that the Navy tradition of having civilian-sponsored vessels “helps to cement the critical connection between our service members and the civilians back home who love them, miss them, and owe them a debt of gratitude.”

    Construction of the USS Delaware will begin next year; its service will begin in 2018.

  • President Obama Honors Veterans at Arlington National Cemetery

    President Obama at Arlington National Cemetery

    President Barack Obama delivers Veterans Day remarks at the Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Nov. 11, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    Today is Veterans Day, and President Obama, Vice President Biden, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden travelled to Arlington National Cemetery to honor our nation’s fallen warriors, veterans and military families. Before President Obama gave remarks, they laid a wreath to “remember every service member who has ever worn our nation’s uniform.”

    The President discussed our sacred duty to care for our men and women in uniform and their families, even after their military service has concluded.  

    So long after the battles end, long after our heroes come home, we stay by their side.  That’s who we are.  And that’s who we’ll be for today’s returning service members and their families.  Because no one who fights for this country overseas should ever have to fight for a job, or a roof over their head, or the care that they have earned when they come home.   

    We know the most urgent task many of you face is finding a new way to serve.  That’s why we’ve made it a priority to help you find jobs worthy of your incredible skills and talents.  That’s why, thanks to the hard work of Michelle and Jill Biden, some of our most patriotic businesses have hired or trained 125,000 veterans and military spouses.  It’s why we’re transforming, for the first time in decades, how the military transitions service members from the battlefield to the workplace.  And because you deserve to share in the opportunities you defend, we are making sure that the Post-9/11 GI Bill stays strong so you can earn a college education and pursue your dreams. 

  • Dr. Jill Biden and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Host Breast Cancer Awareness Month Call

    Dr. Jill Biden Helps Raise Breast Cancer Awareness

    Dr. Jill Biden, center, holds a conference call with advocates and women’s health groups to raise awareness on the importance of early detection and treatment of breast cancer, at the Vice President’s residence in Washington, D.C., Oct 24, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Sonya N. Hebert)

    Yesterday afternoon, we were honored to host three breast cancer survivors at the Vice President’s Residence for a Breast Cancer Awareness Month conference call to remind advocates around the country about the importance of early detection and prevention. 

    We heard from Myrna Rodriguez Previte, a breast cancer survivor who struggled to get health insurance as a self-employed real estate broker. When she was diagnosed in 2003 at age 36, she was refused coverage by insurance company after insurance company. Myrna eventually received coverage as a newlywed because she was getting married and was soon covered under her husband’s policy.

    But as Myrna noted, because of the Affordable Care Act, starting in 2014, insurance companies will no longer be able to discriminate against anyone in her situation for having breast cancer as a pre-existing condition.

    Myrna has since founded Amigas Unidas, a peer-to-peer breast cancer organization that works with Latina women to provide bilingual and financial services.

  • From the Archives: Breast Cancer Awareness Month

    October marks Breast Cancer Awareness month, a time to honor those lost to the disease and recognize the importance of prevention and early detection in the fight against breast cancer.

    During last year’s Breast Cancer Awareness month, Dr. Jill Biden, Jennifer Aniston and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius visited Inova Breast Care Center in Virginia to meet with breast cancer survivors and discuss the role access to care has in breast cancer prevention.

    With regular screenings, breast cancer often can be found early, when the chance of successful treatment is best. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, preventive benefits like mammograms and well-woman visits are now covered with no out-of-pocket cost for 20.4 million women. 

  • West Wing Week: 10/05/12 or "Operation Educate the Educators"

    Welcome to the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, the White House and The Treasury hosted events highlighting innovative apps, we travel with Dr. Biden to events in Washington and Virginia and the White House Blue Room Christmas tree is selected in North Carolina. That's September 28th to October 5th or "Operation Educate the Educators".


  • Joining Forces to Train Teachers to Serve Military Children

    Dr. Jill Biden and Chief of Staff of the Army General Ray Odierno laugh during a Joining Forces event (October 3, 2012)

    Dr. Jill Biden and Chief of Staff of the Army General Ray Odierno laugh during a Joining Forces event celebrating the more than 100 colleges and universities that have signed on to “Operation Educate the Educators” at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., Oct. 3, 2012. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

    This afternoon, I was so honored to meet two of our nation’s youngest heroes – 11-year-old twin sisters Felicity and Abigail. The 7th graders love to read and play sports, and, like many of our nation’s 1.3 million school-age military children, their current school is not their first school. 

    Felicity and Abigail have attended five different schools in four states in the past seven years.  They have left old friends and met new ones, transferred school records, left old soccer fields to join new teammates and coaches, and weathered their father’s many deployments. Their dad missed birthdays four, seven, eight, nine and 10.

    But they are resilient and strong young ladies who are fiercely proud to be Army kids.  I am proud of them, too.

    I am also proud that today, more than 100 colleges of teacher education have signed on to Operation Educate the Educators, a partnership between the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the Military Child Education Coalition. Last year, the partners set a Joining Forces goal of getting 100 colleges of education to commit to raising awareness on their campuses about military children in their classrooms, and to help better prepare teachers to support them. 

  • Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month at the Naval Observatory

    On Wednesday evening at the Naval Observatory, Vice President and Dr. Biden hosted their fourth annual reception in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, which began on September 15  and continues through October 15. In the past and upcoming weeks, communities across the country will celebrate the histories, cultures, and contributions of Americans with ancestors from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

    We’re proud to serve Vice President Biden and this Administration, which has continued to push to “widen the circle of opportunity for the Hispanic community and keep the American dream within reach for all who seek it,” as President Obama said in his proclamation this year.

    Vice President Joe Biden speaks at a Hispanic Heritage Month reception with Dr. Jill Biden and high school senior Ashley Guzman

    Vice President Joe Biden speaks at a Hispanic Heritage Month reception with Dr. Jill Biden and high school senior Ashley Guzman, at the Naval Observatory Residence in Washington, D.C., September 26, 2012. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)