Anita B. McBride was appointed as Executive in Residence at the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies at American University’s School of Public Affairs in April 2010. Mrs. McBride was the committee chair for the “The Legacies of America’s First Ladies” conference held in March 2011, which examined both the powerful job and the women who, though unelected and unpaid, devoted themselves to it. “It’s a topic near and dear to my heart,” said Anita McBride.
From 2005 to 2009, she served as Assistant to President George W. Bush and Chief of Staff to First Lady Laura Bush. She was responsible for the First Lady’s policy, press, correspondence, scheduling and advance, speechwriting, and social offices and directed the staff’s work on the wide variety of issues in which Mrs. Bush was involved. As a senior member of President Bush’s staff, Mrs. McBride was responsible for working with West Wing policy advisors to coordinate the First Lady’s efforts in support of specific presidential policies and initiative including global health and education and human rights.
Mrs. McBride’s White House service spans two decades and three administrations. She joined the Reagan Administration in 1984. From 1987 to 1992, Mrs. McBride was Director of White House Personnel under Presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush. Mrs. McBride also served as Director of the Speakers Bureau at the United States Information Agency in 1992. Under President George W. Bush, Mrs. McBride served as Special Assistant to the President for White House Management. From 2001 to 2004, Mrs. McBride served in the State Department, where she was Senior Advisor to the Secretary and White House Liaison from 2001 to 2003 and then Senior Advisor in the Bureau of International Organizations in 2004. Mrs. McBride was a member of U.S. delegations to the UN Commission on the Status of Women in 2002, the UN Commission on Human Rights in 2003, and the UN Special Session on HIV/AIDS in 2006. Mrs. McBride’s private sector experience includes serving as project manager of the Smith Kline Beecham Foundation’s flagship philanthropic program, Science in the Summer. Mrs. McBride is a member of the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council, a public-private partnership between the U.S. and Afghan governments, Georgetown University, and private-sector institutions. In 2008, Mrs. McBride was honored by the Afghan government for her commitment to Afghan issues. Mrs. McBride is a Member of the Board of Directors of the National Italian American Foundation and also serves as a Member of the Advisory Committee for the Mothers Day Every Day Campaign, which is a maternal and child health advocacy organization chaired by Ann Veneman and Donna Shalala.
Mrs. McBride received her B.A. in International Studies from the University of Connecticut in 1981, and studied international relations and foreign languages at American University in Washington and the University of Florence in Italy. Mrs. McBride is recipient of the National Guard and Reserve’s Patriot Award and the University of Connecticut’s President's Award of Distinction.
Mrs. McBride was appointed to the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board by President George W. Bush in January 2009.