Former US President Donald Trump’s administration was truly a family affair – we watched his son grow up and also saw that two of his closest advisers were his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner. On the other hand, Joe Biden’s daughter Ashley, who is a social worker, confirmed that she will not have an official job in the White House. So who is Ashley Biden and why does she want to keep a low profile in such a high profile atmosphere? Here are 10 facts explaining her life!
10 Ashley Biden Facts That Are So Binge-Worthy!
1. She was arrested:
In 2002, Ashley Biden was arrested in Chicago and charged with obstructing a police officer.
The future first daughter was leaving a club on Division Street when a friend, John Kaulentis, threw a soft-drink can at a police officer who had told John to stay behind a barricade. The barricade was actually set up to keep club patrons off of the street. This ordeal escalated and resulted in another friend, Kelly Donohoe, hitting an officer. As Kaulentis and Donohoe were being taken into custody, Biden allegedly “verbally intimidated” a police officer and was arrested. All three were released eventually on their own recognizance.
2. She was caught up in a cocaine scandal:
In 2009, a friend of Ashley Biden attempted to sell a video, reportedly of Biden using cocaine at a party, to the New York Post for $2 million. Negotiations brought the cost of the video down to $400,000 but the newspaper declined the offer, selecting instead to publish a story about the alleged video.
After the New York Post published the story, it was revealed that the future first daughter had previously been arrested in 1999 in New Orleans for possession of marijuana, but the charges were quickly dropped and she was released.
3. She’s very close with her dad Joe Biden:
The Delaware native, 39, came into this world in 1981 and grew up with her half brothers Beau and Hunter Biden, who both survived a 1972 car crash that killed their mother, Neilia, and younger sister, Naomi Biden (may they rest in peace).
So it’s safe to say that Ashley is close to her dad, especially since in 1972 Naomi, his first daughter who was nicknamed “Amy,” was only 15 months old when she died.
Joe tied the knot to his current wife Jill Biden in 1977, and Ashley his second daughter was born in 1981.
The future first daughter accompanied her father on the campaign trail, and the experience inspired her to become an activist. “My dad always taught me that silence is complicity, and that I must stand up for anyone who was being treated unfairly. That has stayed with me through adulthood, and is the guiding principle in my professional life,” she has explained.
The future first daughter went to a private high school in Bloomington, Delaware, and later majored in cultural anthropology at Tulane University.
FUN FACT: Unsure what her next steps would be, a young Ashley Biden took shifts at a local pizza shop in her hometown until deciding to pursue her passion for activism. In 2010, she earned her master’s degree in social work through the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice.
Later on, Ashley Biden was named executive director of the Delaware Center for Justice in 2014, which focuses on criminal justice reform. The future first lady’s job was impacted by the tragedy in 2015 when her older half-brother Beau passed away of brain cancer.
“It was very important to Ashley,” her mom Jill Biden explained at the time, “to carry on Beau’s legacy—the reforms in criminal justice, his work with children. Hunter, too, set an example with the work he was doing. She always had a reason to be engaged with them and she found a way to follow her own lead.”
Ashley has spoken about knowing that her brother Beau will be part of his dad’s inauguration: “He was 46 when he passed. Dad will be the 46th president,” she told NBC.
4. She was born for public service which started with bullying and dolphins:
In a 2018 interview with Delaware Today magazine, Biden described herself as an advocate and peacemaker. “I was always a mediator, and couldn’t stand someone getting made fun of or being bullied as a young girl,” she said.
“Often when I was 8 and 9 years old, I would talk to my dad when he came home from work about dolphins getting caught in tuna nets. I would come prepared with research and posters and talk about how we needed to save the dolphins,” Ashley Biden recalled. This effort, she said, eventually led to her father, then a Democratic senator of Delaware, to sponsor the Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act of 1990. This action helped to establish a dolphin-safe labeling system and a tuna tracking program.
The Delaware native explained to Glamour in 2017 that such cases are important to her saying: “The passion started at a very young age…My dad is a lifelong public servant; my mom was a public-school teacher—it’s in my DNA.”
According to her, she had a real passion for causes since she was very young: “When I was a kid, I always really loved animals, and I found out that Bonne Bell lip gloss was testing on animals, so I organized my school to start writing letters to [the company],” she says. “Then I became obsessed with the plight of dolphins getting stuck in tuna nets. My dad connected me with Congressman Barbara Boxer, who I nicknamed the ‘dolphin lady,’ and she got me onto the floor to help lobby Republican congressmen for The Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act.”
5. But, Ashley Biden says she won’t be working in her father’s administration:
Ashley Biden says that she does not intend to play a role in her father’s administration. While speaking with former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager on the “Today” show, the 39-year-old social worker, fashion designer and community advocate wants to advocate for social justice and mental health instead. She also said that she hopes to use the new platform to push for community development and revitalization.
“I do hope to bring awareness and education to some topics, subjects that are really important,” she said.
This is a notable about-face from the political capital given to President Donald Trump’s family members, as daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, in particular, sparked controversy for their roles as special assistant and senior adviser to the president, respectively.
Now, President Biden has been attacked over his son Hunter’s finances and foreign business dealings. It was revealed last month that the Justice Department launched a tax probe involving his son, Hunter, in 2018, with the Associated Press reporting that some of the scrutinies are focusing on his past work in China. Trump and his supporters have accused Hunter of profiting off his political connections via his father, which Ashley addressed saying that the attacks on her family’s integrity have “hurt,” and cited that the online criticism is the reason why she doesn’t have public social media accounts.
“At the end of the day, they may get it wrong, but at least I got it right, you know? At least I know the real deal,” she said. “I know the type of man my father is, and the woman my mother is, and the man my brother is.”
6. Ashley Biden spoke up about this Melania Trump mishap:
The 39-year-old Biden spoke to the “Today” show’s Jenna Bush Hager about the less-than-normal transition and confirmed the reports that first lady Melania Trump had not invited the new first lady Jill Biden for the traditional “tea and tour” protocol. This was a major break in tradition for her mother, now first lady Jill Biden, and outgoing first lady Melania Trump.
Typically, the outgoing first lady (Melania Trump) would invite the new first lady (Jill Biden) for a tour of the White House family quarters in addition to having tea. However, Ashley Biden confirmed that plans for this tradition weren’t made.
“No, I don’t think they’re doing the traditional protocol, which is unfortunate,” the first daughter said. “But I think we’re all OK with it.” The Trumps also skipped the Inauguration on Wednesday, as well, which President-elect Biden has said is probably a “good thing.”
7. She values keeping a low profile:
Thanks to growing up in the public eye, scandals and arrests, Ashley likes to keep certain aspects of her life private when she can. Her Instagram account is off-limits to the public and most of her attendance at events is low-profile. At a keynote speech at the Women Rule 2014 Summit in Washington, D.C., Ashley got candid about her feelings on speaking at such large events. “It’s an honor to be here amongst a room full of women who rule,” she said during one of her rare public events. There is actually a really good energy, and I actually feel comfortable, and in these types of things, I normally don’t.”
8. Here is where she went for schooling:
Ashley Biden attended Wilmington Friends School, a private school run by the Religious Society of Friends in Wilmington.
The future first daughter graduated from Archmere Academy, a private Catholic school, in 1999. While at her father’s alma mater, Archmere, she was a member of the lacrosse and field hockey teams.
When the future first daughter was in elementary school, she discovered that the cosmetics company Bonne Bell tested its products on animals. She wrote a letter to the company asking them to change their policy on animal testing. A young Ashley later got involved in dolphin conservation, inspiring her father to work with Congresswoman Barbara Boxer to write and pass the 1990 Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act.
Ashley Biden made an appearance before members of the United States Congress to lobby for the legislation.
The future first daughter earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in cultural anthropology from Tulane University.
During her freshman year of college, Ashley was employed at Girls Incorporated, now Kingswood Academy, as a camp counselor. She also interned at a summer program at Georgetown University, helping the youth from Anacostia.
9. She owns her own company, Livelihood:
Ashley founded the organization Livelihood after Beau died.
A fashion-retail project, Livelihood designs and sells American-made clothing, with a goal of donating proceeds to sales to community organizations in D.C. and Delaware. The intention of the organization is “supporting criminal justice reform, improving childhood education and ameliorating economic disparities.” In an interview with Delaware Today, Ashley spoke on why she got into the business. She said, “It doesn’t matter if it’s overcoming incarceration and poor choices—I’ve made plenty, too—or grappling with a sibling’s death, you can move forward and be better,” she says. “Getting people out of the justice system, or simply getting them the services they need, is about hope and possibilities. I am in my job because our system is malfunctioning. Mass incarceration isn’t the answer.”
10. She’s married to Philadelphia surgeon Howard Krein:
According to Wikipedia, in 2010, the future first daughter began dating Howard Krein, a plastic surgeon, and otolaryngologist, after being introduced to Howard by her brother, Beau.
On June 2, 2012, they married in a Catholic-Jewish interfaith ceremony at St. Joseph’s on the Brandywine in Delaware where she was baptized; the reception was held at the Biden home. “This is the right guy,” Biden said at the time. “And he’s getting a helluva woman.” Ashley met Krein through her late brother Beau in 2010, and the couple planned to live less than an hour away from Beau in Philadelphia.
Her husband, who is Jewish, works as a chief medical officer at StartUp Health and an assistant professor of otolaryngology at Thomas Jefferson University and is an assistant professor of facial, plastic, and reconstructive surgery.
According to his LinkedIn, Krein holds a few positions: He’s Chief Medical Officer at StartUp Health, which helps “entrepreneurs to build sustainable health and wellness companies,” senior director of health policy and innovation at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, and associate professor of otolaryngology: head and neck surgery at Jefferson as well. He also has an unofficial role on the Covid-19 pandemic response team. He’s on Instagram, apparently, but doesn’t post very much.
In an interview with The News Journal at the time, Ashley Biden’s mother Jill said the couple were introduced to each other by Biden’s oldest half brother, the late Beau Biden. She said Krein proposed about a year later at California’s Big Sur and described Krein as “the perfect guy” and “perfect for Ashley.”