Martha Joynt Kumar


White House Transition Project

As a scholar with a research focus on the White House, she is interested in presidential – press relations, White House communications operations, and presidential transitions. Her most recent book is on the 2008-2009 presidential transition, Before the Oath: How George W Bush and Barack Obama Managed a Transfer of Power. Her earlier works include, Managing the President’s Message: The White House Communication Operation, which won a 2008 Richard E. Neustadt Award from the presidency section of the American Political Science Association. Her previous books include Portraying the President: The White House and the News Media with Michael Grossman; White House World: Transitions, Organization, and Office Operations edited with Terry Sullivan; and Presidential Power, edited by Robert Y. Shapiro, Martha Joynt Kumar, and Lawrence R. Jacobs.

She is director of the White House Transition Project [], which is a nonpartisan effort by presidency scholars to provide information on presidential transitions and White House operations to those who coming into the White House. The group provided information to the candidates and White House staff for the 2000 and 2008 presidential transitions. She is an emeritus professor at Towson University where she taught for several decades. She is on the board of directors of the National Academy of Public Administration. She is currently on the board of directors and the executive committee of the White House Historical Association and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Connecticut College. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.