Dana Perino is a co-host on the hit show, The Five, which airs daily at 5pm on the Fox News Channel. The Five has won its time slot every day since it started in July 2011 and last year finished as the third most-watched program in cable news. Part of an ensemble cast, some viewers nicknamed Perino “The Voice of Reason on The Five.” She also appears weekly on The O’Reilly Factor and The Kelly File and during special election coverage.
The Voice of the White House. Before joining Fox, Perino served as the first Republican woman to be press secretary of the United States. She spent more than seven years as part of the administration of President George W. Bush, joining right after the 9/11 attacks as a spokesperson for the Justice Department. A year later, she was pulled to the White House and stayed until the last day of the Bush administration. As press secretary, she handled interactions with the White House press corps and advised the president on communications. President Bush has said that whenever he did a press conference or interview, Perino made sure he was never surprised by a question. She describes her approach to the position as a 50-50 mindset – half the effort went to defending and advocating the position of the president and the United States, and the other half was defending and advocating the media’s access to the president and the government. Perino continues to be active with the Bush Center in Dallas and joyfully says her motto is, “Once a staffer, always a staffer.”
Post White House Political Commentary. After the White House years, Perino made a career transition. She went from speaking on behalf of the nation to speaking for herself. Not only did she become a commentator on current events and foreign policy, but she also published And the Good News Is…Lessons and Advice from the Bright Side, which debuted as a No. 1 New York Times best-seller and remained on the list for more than three months. Her other publishing credits include editorial direction for Things that Matter by Charles Krauthammer and The Time of Our Lives by Peggy Noonan.
Giving Back. In 2010, President Obama appointed her to serve on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which complemented her passion for advocating for individual and economic freedom, especially for women in Africa. Since leaving the White House, Perino and her husband, Peter McMahon, have volunteered in South Africa and Congo. In 2014 they spent a week at a charitable hospital and came back to America to broadcast their findings and appeal for additional help.
To express her gratitude for the opportunities she’s been afforded, Perino started Minute Mentoring, a program for young woman that’s like speed dating between mentors and mentees. She also serves on the board of Companions for Heroes, which matches rescue animals with first-responders and veterans managing post-traumatic stress.
Perino was born in Wyoming and raised in Colorado. She has a masters degree in public affairs reporting from the University of Illinois – Springfield. Before the Bush Administration, she worked as a daily news reporter, as a press secretary on Capitol Hill, and in the private sector for global public relations companies.
Perino will serve as the opening Keynote on January 18 at 11 a.m.