Helen Thomas (August 4, 1920 – July 20, 2013) was an American author and news service reporter, member of the White House press corps and opinion columnist. She worked for the United Press and post-1958 successor United Press International (UPI) for 57 years, first as a correspondent, and later as White House bureau manager. She was a columnist for Hearst Newspapers from 2000 to 2010, writing on national affairs and the White House. She covered the administrations of eleven U.S. presidents—from the final years of the Eisenhower administration to the second year of the Obama administration.
Helen Thomas was the first female officer of the National Press Club, the first female member and president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, and the first female member of the Gridiron Club. She wrote six books; her latest, with co-author Craig Crawford, is Listen Up, Mr. President: Everything You Always Wanted Your President to Know and Do (2009). Thomas retired from Hearst Newspapers on June 7, 2010, following controversial comments she made about Israel, Israeli Jews and the Israeli–Palestinian conflict
Helen Thomas died on July 20, 2013 at her home in Washington, D.C. at the age of 92, just 2 weeks short of her 93rd birthday. Many female journalists memorialized Thomas on Twitter, including Judy Woodruff, who called her a “trailblazer”, and Lynn
Sweet, who said she was a “glass ceiling breaking journalist”. Andrea Mitchell tweeted that Thomas “made it possible for all of us who followed.”Dana Perino, who served as press secretary to President George W. Bush, remembered that on her first day as Press Secretary, Thomas approached her to give her words of encouragement.