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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 1, 1997

Statement by the Press Secretary

President Clinton today promoted J. Terry Edmonds to the position of Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Speechwriting, a newly created position. For the past two years he has served as Special Assistant to the President and Presidential Speechwriter. His new role will include additional supervisory and editing responsibilities. Mr. Edmonds took a leave of absence in 1996, and served as Senior Advisor for Speechwriting on the Clinton-Gore campaign. He is recognized as the first African American presidential speechwriter.

Prior to joining the White House in March 1995, Mr. Edmonds was Deputy Director of Speechwriting for HHS Secretary Donna Shalala. He also has more than 24 years experience as a public affairs and feature writer in both the public and private sectors. He served as Press Secretary for then-Maryland Congressman Kweisi Mfume, and also served as Director of Communications for the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.