Controversies

West Virginia official to return to job after racist Obama post

FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 21, 2016, file photo, first lady Michelle Obama speaks to student participants during a Grammy Museum musical workshops hosted by the first lady in the East Room of the White House in Washington.

FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 21, 2016, file photo, first lady Michelle Obama speaks to student participants during a Grammy Museum musical workshops hosted by the first lady in the East Room of the White House in Washington.  (AP)

The director of a West Virginia nonprofit group suspended for making a racist comment about first lady Michelle Obama on Facebook is set to return to her job later this month.

Clay County Development director Pamela Ramsey Taylor was placed on leave last month after she made the post following the presidential election, saying: “It will be refreshing to have a classy, beautiful, dignified First Lady in the White House. I’m tired of seeing a Ape in heels.”

The Charleston-Gazette reported that a letter from the agency’s acting director Leslie McGlothlin to the West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services says Taylor is scheduled to return to work Dec. 23 after her suspension.

The nonprofit provides services to elderly and low-income residents in Clay County. It is funded through state and federal grants and local fees.

Taylor was not the only one under fire because of the post.

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Clay Mayor Beverly Whaling resigned after responding to the post, saying: “Just made my day Pam.”

Whaling has said her comment wasn't intended to be racist.

“I was referring to my day being made for change in the White House! I am truly sorry for any hard feeling this may have caused! Those who know me know that I'm not in any way racist!"

African-Americans make up about 4 percent of West Virginia's 1.8 million residents, according to the U.S. Census.

About 77 percent of Clay County residents supported Trump in the Nov. 8 election. In 2012, President Barack Obama received 31 percent of the county vote when Republican Mitt Romney easily carried the state.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.