Heather Ann Nauert is an American journalist and current acting Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs and Spokesperson for the United States Department of State. Heather Nauert is also a former American news anchor and was born on January 27, 1970 in Rockford, Illinois. Her father was an insurance executive and her mother was a horse trader from Denver, Colorado. Nauert grew up in Wisconsin. She went to Pine Manor College in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, graduated with B.A. in Arts and Communications from Mount Vernon College for Women in Washington D.C. and received a Masters degree in Journalism from Columbia University. She is a fellow member for the Council of Foreign Relations.
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Nauert’s television reporting began in the late 1990s. Her first job was in 1996 as a reporter for the syndicated business news program First Business. It was a weekly newscast that aired in over one hundred markets nationwide. She also worked as a government affairs consultant on tax, health insurance and issues related to Social Security in Washington D.C. Nauert contributed to Fox News Channel for three years as a correspondent working for The Big Story with John Gibson and Heather Nauert, and Good Day New York for FOX5 WYNT-TV. She continuously contributed to The Big Story. She remained with Fox News until 2005 when she subsequently moved to ABC News where she served for two years as a general assignment correspondent for Good Morning America, World News Tonight and Nightline. She returned to Fox News Channel in 2007 as a news anchor.
Nauert served as a news anchor for Fox News Channel on Fox & Friends and as the co-host of Fox & Friends First. She provided the top headlines of the day on weekdays for the 6-9 AM slot for Fox & Friends. In 2009, she was the co-host, along with Steve Lucy, for the newscast Good Day Early Call and Good Day New York Wake Up. In October 2012, she left Good Day Wake Up and joined The Strategy Room on Fox News.com. Her work included covering major breaking stories such as the aftermath of September 11 terrorist attack and the Iraqi election. Her recent work includes coverage of the 2013 government shutdown, the Benghazi, Libya attack in 2013 and the on-going crisis in Syria. As a journalist, she has interviewed several celebrities including Liz Cheney, daughter of Vice President Dick Cheney, comedian Sid Caesar and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. of NASCAR. In 2016, she traveled to battleground states to report on the presidential primaries and election. She also reported from the Republican and Democratic conventions, presidential debates and the inauguration.
During her stint with ABC, she received an Emmy nomination for her outstanding work on the special series 13 Around the World. She also received a nomination for the News and Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a News Story in a Regularly Scheduled Newscast in 2007, while she was in FNC.
Nauert is married to Scott Norby, an investment banker at Goldman Sachs. The couple is happily married and they have two sons, Peter born in 2009 and Gage born in 2010. A protective mother, she does not expose her children to the media. Her marriage is strong and there is no reason for divorce. Nauert loves travelling which she does during holidays. She is an enthusiastic animal rights activist. Nauert is active on the social media site, Twitter. She constantly posts tweets of her recent news updates.
On April 24, 2017 The Department of State welcomed Heather Nauert as the new State Department Spokesperson saying that Heather Nauert joins the State Department after a career in broadcast journalism. Heather Nauert was generally well liked by her State Department colleagues, and widely viewed as a competent spokesperson who diligently educated herself on a large range of international issues. Bruce Wharton, a former ambassador and Foreign Service officer who overlapped with Nauert while serving as the acting under-secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, says of Nauert: “Switching from reading from a teleprompter to having to master an entire book of global events was a very tough thing to do, but I think she did it very well."
But the transition from news anchor to State Department Spokeswoman was not completely smooth. Nauert made a remarkable slip when she cited the D-Day invasion as an example of America’s “very strong relationship with the government of Germany.” During the D-Day invasion on 6 June, 1944, around 156,000 British, American, Canadian and other Allied troops stormed the beaches of Normandy to establish a foothold in Nazi-occupied France. Nauert was skewered on Twitter with one user saying “Dear @StateDept: You have six months to educate Heather Nauert on the history and significance of Pearl Harbor before she cites it as an example of strong US-Japan relations. Get to it – you may need some time to catch her up.”
Nevertheless, On March 13, 2018, Heather Nauert was designated as Acting Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. It was also announced that she would continue to serve as State Department Spokesperson. Nauert arrived in Washington without any foreign policy, government, or political experience and this new dual role appears to be particularly daunting. Tara Sonenshine, a former under-secretary for public diplomacy and public affairs under President Obama, said “it's nearly impossible to be both spokesperson and under-secretary simultaneously, given the travel demands and differing nature of the roles.”
Business Insider recently reported that Ms. Nauret is a "top contender to become teh next White House press secretary". Current White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said she and Nauert have "a really good relationship. I think she's smart, she's articulate, she has a very team mentality and is really helpful in terms of making sure we're all singing from the same sheet of music," Sanders said in an interview. "That's extremely important when you're running 1,000 miles an hour and walking a tightrope with no net."
Last Modified: Apr 8, 2020