, one of ‘s most loyal and trusted advisers, said she will resign as White House communications director.
With Hicks’s departure, the president is losing a valued aide who has been at his side since before he launched his long-shot bid for the presidency in 2015.
“There are no words to adequately express my gratitude to President Trump. I wish the president and his administration the very best as he continues to lead our country,” Hicks said in a statement.
The 29-year-old adviser, who had no previous political experience, indicated she approached Trump recently to tell him that she wanted to leave in order to explore opportunities outside the White House. She did not say whether she has another job lined up.
Hicks has no set departure date but is expected to officially exit in the next few weeks, according to the White House.
“Hope is outstanding and has done great work for the last three years,” Trump said in a statement Wednesday. “She is as smart and thoughtful as they come, a truly great person. I will miss having her by my side but when she approached me about pursuing other opportunities, I totally understood. I am sure we will work together again in the future.”
The announcement of Hicks’s resignation comes one day after she sat for a marathon interview with the House Intelligence Committee as part of its investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.
Hicks frustrated some committee members by refusing to answer questions about events during the presidential transition and after Trump took office.
During her testimony, Hicks reportedly admitted that her job in the Trump administration required her to tell “white lies.”
Her exit from the White House means that Trump is losing his longest-serving political aide. The former model and public-relations professional was named communications director last summer after ‘s tumultuous 11-day tenure.
Hicks was tasked with stabilizing the White House’s press operation that often clashed with other officials in the West Wing and spearheading its responses to multiple crises that have wracked the administration.
But Hicks’s role came under scrutiny earlier this month in the aftermath of the domestic abuse allegations against former White House staff secretary Rob Porter. Hicks reportedly helped arrange public statements that were supportive of Porter, whom she was dating at the time.
The staff secretary eventually resigned after photos emerged that purportedly showed the bruised face of one of his ex-wives.
Despite that, Hicks earned praise from top White House officials for her ability to operate in Trump’s inner circle while maintaining a quiet public profile.
“When I became chief of staff, I quickly realized what so many have learned about Hope – she is strategic, poised and wise beyond her years,” chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE said in a statement Wednesday.
“She became a trusted adviser and counselor and did a tremendous job overseeing the communications for the president’s agenda including the passage of historic tax reform,” Kelly added. “She has served her country with great distinction. To say that she will be missed, is an understatement.”
News of Hick’s resignation comes one day after deputy communications director Josh Raffel announced he would leave the White House.
Raffel worked closely with first daughter and her husband , both White House senior advisers. Hicks first entered Trump’s orbit when she did work for Ivanka Trump’s fashion line while working at a New York PR firm.
The positions of communications adviser has seen unprecedented turnover in the Trump White House. Hicks’s successor will be the sixth person named to serve in the role in less than two years.
The New York Times first reported that Hicks would leave the White House.
Updated: 5:15 p.m.