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About Martha KumarPresidential TransitionsWhite House Communications OperationsInterviews with White House Officials and ReportersBooks

Welcome to my website
Martha Joynt Kumar is the director of the White House Transition Project and is a retired professor of political science at Towson University who is the author or coauthor of several books on the presidency, including Before the Oath: How George W. Bush and Barack Obama Managed a Transfer of Power (2015), Managing the President’s Message: The White House Communications Operations (2007 and 2010), and with Michael Grossman, Portraying the President: The White House and the News Media (1981). Additional books include:Martha Joynt Kumar and Terry Sullivan, editors, The White House World: Transitions, Organization, and Office Operations (2003) and Robert Y. Shapiro, Martha Joynt Kumar, and Lawrence R. Jacobs, editors, Presidential Power: Forging the Presidency for the Twenty-First Century (2000).

 Before the Oath

Kumar has nailed it. This is a scholarly and fascinating account of White House communications in the modern era. Painful as it sometimes is for past press secretaries, this is a remarkably accurate picture of how presidents deal with the press." -- Marlin Fitzwater, Press Secretary for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush

"Tapping access to various administrations and the reporters who covered them, Dr. Martha Kumar traces the history of the often fractious relationship between the White House and the press, the schemes each devises to cloak or reveal information; she tells why some succeed and others fail. A valuable addition to a presidential book library." -- Ken Aulettamedia critic, The New Yorker and author of Media Man: Ted Turner's Improbable Empire

 Public Speaking Engagements
Martha Joynt Kumar speaks to group and university audiences interested in White House communications operations, presidential publicity, and presidential transitions.  You can contact her by email at and by phone.
Cell Phone:- 202 285-3537
 Interviews with White House Officials and Reporters

White House Communications Operation: Don Gonyea, National Public Radio

May 11, 2010 - 90 Minutes

White House Communications Operation: Chuck Babington, Associated Press

April 27, 2010 - 57 Minutes

White House Communications Operation: Glenn Thrush, Politico

April 20, 2010 - 84 Minutes

White House Communications Operation: Josh Earnest, Deputy Press Secretary to President Barack Obama

April 4, 2010 - 90 Minutes

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