Valerie Jarrett on how motherhood changed her sense of purpose
Play • 42 min

Valerie Jarrett is the former Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama and the longest-serving Senior Advisor to any U.S. President. Before coming to the White House, Valerie had hired a young Michelle Robinson to work with her in Chicago Mayor Richard Daly’s office back in 1991. Today, Valerie still works with the Obamas, serving as the Senior Advisor to the Obama Foundation, and works with Michelle on a nonprofit called "When We All Vote," whose aim is to spark conversation around our rights and responsibilities in shaping our democracy. She also has a new memoir out called, Finding My Voice: My Journey to the White House and the Path Forward.

Beyond her life in public service, Valerie is first and foremost a mom to her only daughter, Laura. In this episode, Valerie chats with Liz about how becoming a mother changed the course of her career, raising Laura as a single working mom, as well as why she never wants any working mom to hide their motherhood identity.

After their conversation, hear Ella Davis read her essay, “To all the single moms who feel the intensity of being the only parent—I see you” from Motherly’s website.

The Motherly Podcast is hosted by Liz Tenety and produced by Micaela Heck and Samantha Gattsek. Music by The Blue Dot Sessions. 

Thanks to our sponsor, Prudential. 

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