Template:Character Donatella Moss (born 1974, Warroad, Minnesota) is the Chief of Staff to First Lady Helen Santos. She previously held the position of Senior Assistant to Deputy White House Chief of Staff Josh Lyman and worked on both the Russell and Santos presidential campaigns in 2006.

She was portrayed by Janel Moloney. Although all of the senior staffs' assistants are continuing characters with personal backgrounds, Donna was the most well-defined and frequently featured staff member on the assistant level.

Biographical Information

Donna was Josh Lyman's assistant until she quit her job in the episode "Impact Winter" (s6e09). It was revealed in the episode Faith Based Initiative in season 6 that the new position she had taken was that of senior aide to Will Bailey - Vice President Bob Russell's presidential campaign manager. Her new position placed her in direct conflict with Josh, who resigned in that episode to run the campaign of retiring US Congressman Matt Santos, whom he had convinced to run for President. After Matt Santos won the nomination, Donna applied to work for Josh at the Santos campaign. However, all of the personal attacks on Santos that Donna made as Russell's press secretary forced Josh to refuse her application.

Donna was born in northern Minnesota. She found out in the third season that she is a no longer a United States citizen, after the Minnesota town in which she was born ended up in Canada due to border changes. However, her citizenship was granted to her again after the discovery of a grandfather clause in the law. She later moved to Wisconsin where she came from when she joined the Bartlet administration.

Donna was a recurring character during the first season, although she appeared in every episode, and has been a regular since the second. She was seriously injured as a result of a terrorist attack on the American convoy carrying her and others in Gaza. At the end of the fifth season, it was revealed that Donna suffered from a pulmonary embolism and had to undergo life-threatening surgery, which she survived.

Later, on the Santos campaign trail, Donna was hired (unbeknownst to Josh) by Communications Director Louise "Lou" Thornton as a campaign spokesperson. She is currently employed by the first lady, Helen Santos, as chief of staff.



Political History


Jeff Johnson
Senior Assistant to the Deputy White House Chief of Staff for Strategic Planning
Marla Whorisky (temp)
eventually Amy Gardner
Chief of Staff to the First Lady of the United States
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