Two weeks ago Ivanka Trump announced the end to her clothing company, citing conflicts of interest and plans to stay in Washington, D.C., long term.
“When we first started this brand, no one could have predicted the success that we would achieve. After 17 months in Washington, I do not know when or if I will ever return to the business, but I do know that my focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington, so making this decision now is the only fair outcome for my team and partners,” she released in a statement. “I am beyond grateful for the work of our incredible team who has inspired so many women; each other and myself included. While we will not continue our mission together, I know that each of them will thrive in their next chapter.”
Shortly after Donald Trump won the White House in November 2016 and at the conclusion of a grueling campaign, Ivanka Trump didn’t plan to be in Washington — not to mention stay there. She told “60 Minutes” just days after her father was elected she wouldn’t be joining the administration.
“I’m going to be a daughter. I’ve said throughout the campaign that I am very passionate about certain issues. And that I want to fight for them,” she told journalist Leslie Stahl. “Wage equality, childcare. These are things that are very important for me. I’m very passionate about education. Really promoting more opportunities for women. So you know, there are a lot of things that I feel deeply, strongly about. But not in a formal administrative capacity.”
While still a daughter, as a senior advisor to the president Ivanka Trump has aggressively pursued the latter and her indefinitely delayed departure is for the better.
Ivanka Trump, once the center of White House palace intrigue stories and Washington gossip, has been quietly and diligently working on significant projects. While she is engaged on social media, she’s stayed out of the limelight and for the most part, out of the media. She has limited her interviews and refuses to engage in the constant, superficial back and fourth brought on by the daily assaults on her father’s presidency.
She is spearheading the White House Workforce Expansion Initiative, with a goal of working with companies and local communities to fill the current skills gap between available employment and individuals.
In July, President Trump signed an executive order creating the National Council for the American Worker. Unlike many bureaucratic moves and council creations, the goal of incentivizing companies to work with students to develop applicable skills has major promise. The White House is urging the private sector to lead on the issue, rather than implementing burdensome, inefficient government mandates with little results.
“Our Nation is facing a skills crisis. There are currently more than 6.7 million unfilled jobs in the United States, and American workers, who are our country’s most valuable resource, need the skills training to fill them,” the executive order states. “It shall be the policy of the executive branch to work with private employers, educational institutions, labor unions, other non-profit organizations, and State, territorial, tribal, and local governments to update and reshape our education and job training landscape so that it better meets the needs of American students, workers, and businesses.”
On the same day the executive order was signed, Ivanka Trump joined President Trump at Northeast Iowa Community College in Peosta, Iowa, to launch the initiative. In early August, she traveled to Lewis & Clark Community College in Godfrey, Ill., to learn more about the community college’s welding program and to lead a discussion about the skills gap.
“The roaring economy and the low unemployment is creating an unprecedented climate that’s creating opportunity for Americans who have jobs, for increased mobility and upward mobility and enhanced career opportunities. It’s creating opportunity for those who have been on the sidelines and who want that opportunity to enter the work force and find employment,” she said. “For the first time in history we have more job vacancies than unemployed people. There’s a skills mismatch that exists and so what can we do about it? As a federal government, we’re not very good — typically –— at training, but we can leverage the knowledge of the private sector and we can say, be our partner and help us do better.”
Last week, she was in Pittsburgh to tour the next generation of robotics, which are built by American entrepreneurs and innovators.
For connecting the government and private sector, while breaking through infamous federal bureaucracy, Ivanka Trump is exactly what Washington needed. She’s making policy changes inside the beltway, prompting an improvement in the lives of individuals across the country.