By now, you’ve probably seen the name Madeleine Westerhout splashed across headlines after her reported resignation from the White House this week — but hers might be a name you haven’t heard before.
Westerhout was a Trump staffer with one of the longest tenures before her resignation this week, The New York Times reported, as the 28-year-old began working for the president during his transition into the White House.
The Southern California native reportedly disclosed “private details” about the Trump family and “gossiped” about “TV news personalities” seeking access to Trump while drinking during an off-the-record dinner with journalists in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, sources told CBS News.
This all reportedly happened on Thursday, when Trump was on vacation, and Westerhout was not allowed to return to the White House on Friday, the New York Times reported.
After what the newspaper calls her “abrupt and unexpected departure” from Trump’s inner circle, here’s what you need to know about Westerhout.
She was one of the highest paid White House employees
As the special assistant to the president and director of Oval Office operations, the College of Charleston ’13 grad had one of the highest White House salaries with an annual income of $145,000, CNBC reported, citing White House salary information released in July.
Although Westerhout wasn’t in the spotlight during her time as a Trump staffer, she did enjoy a level of closeness to the president, with her desk “just outside the Oval Office,” according to The Washington Post.
According to the Post, her job duties included “control[ing] access to the Oval Office, deliver[ing] the president’s marker-scribbled messages, send[ing] orders to top military officials, print[ing] emails and articles to show Trump, and seek[ing] to keep a tight grip on his schedule.”
She used to work for Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee
Before working with Trump, Westerhout got her start as an RNC aide and traveled the across the country to several GOP debates, according to her Facebook. She also worked for Mitt Romney on his 2012 presidential campaign, according to the New York Times.
In 2012, she called Romney “the greatest man I will ever work for.”
“This country is certainly lucky to have someone like him run for president,” she said in a Facebook post that included a photo of her with Romney.
She reportedly cried on election night after Trump won
On Election Night 2016, Westerhout was reportedly so upset after Trump won that she was crying and “inconsolable,” according to journalist Tim Alberta’s book American Carnage, according to the Washington Post, which obtained an advance copy of the book back in July. The Post reported that the book reveals how several Republicans who previously opposed Trump were persuaded to his side.
But despite her disappointment over Trump’s win at the time, it doesn’t appear that Westerhout necessarily wanted Hillary Clinton to win instead. In 2015, she posted an article about how the RNC used the words “stop hillary” as their WiFi password during a debate, and included the hashtag #StopHillary in her post.
Trump reportedly called her “my beautiful beauty”
Alberta’s book also reportedly revealed that despite her initial wavering, Westerhout eventually became one of Trump’s biggest supporters — she would reportedly do anything for the president, who called her “my beautiful beauty,” according to the Washington Post.
She used to be a barre instructor
Westerhout posts a lot about working out on her social media accounts — she particularly loves Soul Cycle (one of several companies that celebrities have called to boycott after reports that its owner fundraises for Trump) — and even used to work as a fitness instructor herself between political gigs.
“[Pure Barre] double header today! Taught in the morning, took and taught again at night!!” she wrote on Facebook in 2015.
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She’s a Swiftie
According to her social media, Westerhout is a major Taylor Swift fan — although she hasn’t said anything about Swift’s latest album Lover, or her recent political statements. But when Swift’s single “Look What You Made Me Do” dropped off her Reputation album back in 2017, Westerhout posted on Facebook, “Taylor Swift, you did it again!”