Josh Earnest, new White House spokesman, grew up in KC

President Obama’s new spokesman, Josh Earnest, is a Kansas City native, who attended the Barstow School.

Earnest was tapped for the job after Jay Carney resigned Friday. Upon announcing Earnest’s appointment to the press corps, Obama said, “Josh is a coach’s son from Kansas City.  He still roots for the Royals, I guess.” The official transcript notes “(laughter)”

McClatchy profiled him in 2012:

(His parents) still live about 20 minutes from the Red Bridge neighborhood, where he and his two younger brothers grew up. His mother, Jeanne, is a psychologist, and his father, Don, is the athletic director at the Pembroke Hill School. Earnest attended the Barstow School, a private secondary school in Kansas City, on a scholarship. He played sports there, including baseball and basketball.

“He’s definitely the quintessential coach’s son,” said Adam Moore, a childhood friend and classmate at Barstow who’s now a lawyer and partner at Shook, Hardy & Bacon. “He has probably the best baseline jumper you’ve ever seen from the left-hand corner baseline. He could hit that three-pointer every time.”

Moore attributes some of his friend’s success to his Midwestern upbringing: “You always know where you stand with him.”

Carney agreed: “His time in politics has made him smart, but not cynical. Maybe that’s because of his K.C. roots.”

His wife’s grandfather invented the plastic bottle, apparently.


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