Ellen Moran, who served three months as White House communications director, will become chief of staff to Commerce Secretary Gary Locke.
Ms. Moran, who was the executive director Emily's List before joing the Obama administration, has had years of experience in mobilizing public opinion for Democratic candidates, female candidates and labor union causes. She is known for paying attention to details, without losing sight of the big picture.
Her connection to Barack Obama came through David Plouffe, the Obama campaign manager, and David Axelrod, who is senior adviser at the White House. She worked with both in previous jobs. She was a staunch advocate for Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton until Mrs. Clinton conceded the Democratic presidential nomination.
Ms. Moran was the coordinator of the A.F.L.-C.I.O.’s “corporate accountability campaign” against Wal-Mart. During a leave of absence in 2004, she managed “independent expenditures,” advertising and other campaign activities for the Democratic National Committee. She also directed a $50 million issue advocacy campaign for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in 2000, and worked on Senator Tom Harkin’s presidential campaign in 1992.
She was born May 1, 1966, in Troy, N.Y., and grew up in Amherst, Mass. She graduated from Wheaton College in 1988 with degrees in political science and English literature.