Avril Haines named Deputy National Security Advisor
Today, I have the pleasure of naming Avril Haines as my Deputy National Security Advisor. Avril has been a key member of my national security team since early in the Administration, including in her previous role as the National Security Council’s Legal Advisor and in her current capacity as Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. A model public servant, Avril is respected across the government for her intelligence, work ethic, and humility, which she has displayed in positions spanning the three branches of government. I have the utmost trust and confidence in Avril, and I know she will continue to play a critical role in my Administration’s efforts to keep our nation secure and promote American interests and values around the world.
Just as we welcome Avril, I again wish to thank and commend Antony Blinken, whom the Senate confirmed on Tuesday as Deputy Secretary of State. I look forward to continuing to work with Tony in his new capacity, and I am confident that Avril will fill his shoes expertly.
National Security Advisor Susan Rice seconded the President’s welcome in her statement:
I am thrilled to welcome Avril back to the National Security Council (NSC) to serve as my principal deputy. Previously at the State Department, NSC and Central Intelligence Agency, Avril has been indispensable in implementing the Administration’s strategy to address the full range of threats and challenges to our national security. Anyone who has worked with Avril can only be deeply impressed by her keen intellect, her intense dedication to serving the American people, and her proven ability to get things done. They also know what an extraordinary colleague and delightful person she is. I could not be happier that Avril will help me lead the dedicated NSC staff as we continue to make our country safer and stronger and advance American leadership in the world.
I also wish once more to thank Tony Blinken for his extraordinary service to the NSC. I look forward to continuing to work closely with him in his new role as Deputy Secretary of State.
DNI James Clapper issued a statement on Haines’s appointment on December 19. He said:
I am pleased and proud about Avril Haines’ move back to the White House to serve as deputy national security advisor. I understand why the President would want someone of her talent and capability to succeed Tony Blinken, who was confirmed as deputy secretary of state.
Avril is the epitome of professionalism and teamwork, making history as the first woman to serve as CIA deputy director. Although this is a loss for the CIA and the Intelligence Community, we will still benefit from her contributions and leadership in her new role.
On behalf of the entire Intelligence Community, I congratulate Avril on her new job.