Joe Biden

Statement by the Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden on the Death of Evelyn Lieberman

December 14, 2015

Jill and I are blessed that Evelyn Lieberman was our dear friend for thirty years. She was one of the wisest people we knew. Smart, funny. Gifted story teller. Trusted counselor. And devoted mentor to a generation of younger staffers—especially scores of women who have gone on to do incredible things.

A former high school English teacher and child welfare advocate, Evelyn's first job in government was as my press secretary in the Senate. She served the country and tackled some of the most consequential fights of our time—from overseeing contentious Supreme Court nominations to fighting to end the scourge of violence against women.

With everything she did, Evelyn not only cared about humanity; she cared about real people and their hopes, dreams, and aspirations. The real people she grew up with in Brooklyn in the 1950s as a granddaughter of Russian immigrants who sailed to Ellis Island for a better life. The values she learned as a daughter of a tough-as-nails single mother who taught Evelyn and her two brothers about dignity and respect and strong bonds of family. That was Evelyn's education about America—a place where anyone could make it no matter who you are or where you come from. And that's the America Evelyn always believed in—and why she always took it upon herself to give back, serve, and extend a hand so that others could live the American Dream as she did.

Whether it was the Senate, the White House, or the Smithsonian where she later served, Evelyn was the heart of every organization fortunate enough to have her. Everything about her was about helping other people. Everything about her was about character—in life and in death.

Jill and I, the entire Biden family, and all of the staff she worked with and led will miss her smile, her laugh, and her love. We will all miss her greatly and hope her husband, Ed, and their family may take solace knowing there are people around the world who have had a better life because she was part of it—and that the country is a better place because she made her time here on Earth count. A final lesson from a dear friend.

Joseph R. Biden, Statement by the Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden on the Death of Evelyn Lieberman Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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