Hilarious Nicknames the Secret Service Has for Presidents, Including Donald Trump
Presidents experience a lot of changes during their first week at the White House, including name changes. And, we aren’t just referring to placing the word “president” in front of their names. We’re referring to the nicknames — aka, code names — given to them by the Secret Service.
Code names are an important aspect of the Secret Service’s security measures, so much so that they even have special names for government buildings like The White House (aka, “Castle”) and The Capitol (aka, “Punch Bowl”), and world leaders like the Queen of England (page 17). That said, none quite compare to the hilarious ones they have given to presidents.
Ahead, we share the Secret Service code names for presidents, including John F. Kennedy (page 5), Donald Trump (page 8), and Barack Obama (page 10).
1. Richard Nixon
- Nixon’s code name was “Searchlight.”
There are a handful of ironic code names given to presidents, but none quite compare to President Richard Nixon. Known to his security team as Searchlight, Nixon wasn’t exactly a searchlight during the Watergate scandal.
Next: Jimmy Carter’s code name stems from his religion.
2. Jimmy Carter
- Carter’s nickname was “Deacon.”
President Jimmy Carter’s code name could not be more fitting. The former president was deep rooted in his Baptist faith and even taught Sunday school while in office.
Next: Ford’s nickname is very ironic.
3. Gerald Ford
- Gerald Ford was called “Passkey.”
President Gerald Ford was best known by his security team as Passkey — which is ironic, given that he once helped Nixon avoid criminal prosecution and granted him “full, free, and absolute pardon.”
Next: George Bush Sr.’s Secret Service code name
4. George H.W. Bush
- George H.W. Bush was known as “Timberwolf.”
Named after the largest member of the dog family, President George H.W. Bush’s nickname reflected his his large family and leadership role.
Next: JFK also had a code name.
5. John F. Kennedy
- JFK’s nickname was “Lancer,” inspired by Lancelot.
President John F. Kennedy’s nickname was inspired by the legendary tales of Lancelot and the Knights of the Round Table, as his administration was often compared to Camelot.
Next: Ronald Reagan’s code name
6. Ronald Reagan
- Ronald Reagan was known as “Rawhide.”
What name do you give a former Western film star? Rawhide, of course. No telling if President Ronald Reagan selected the name himself or if it was a running joke between his security team — either way, the name fit.
Next: Bill Clinton’s nickname was inspired by the Boy Scouts of America.
7. Bill Clinton
- Clinton’s nickname was “Eagle.”
While in office, President Bill Clinton was known to his security team as Eagle. Many speculate this code name stems from his involvement with the Boy Scouts of America.
Next: Donald Trump’s nickname is nothing short of fitting.
8. Donald Trump
- Donald Trump’s code name is “Mogul.”
Could Donald Trump’s code name be any more fitting? We don’t think so. Despite his jokes about going by “Humble,” the Secret Service thought of something a little more in line with the president’s background.
Next: George W. Bush requested to change his nickname.
9. George W. Bush
- George W. Bush’s nickname was “Trailblazer.”
As the son of a former president, you would think President George W. Bush would just keep the nickname given to him when his father was in office. But when your nickname stems from your partying habits, it’s probably a good idea to start new.
Formerly known as “Tumbler,” George W. Bush was renamed Trailblazer during his time in office.
Next: Obama’s code name
10. Barack Obama
- Obama reportedly selected the name “Renegade” from a list of names provided by the Secret Service.
What name do you give a president like Barack Obama? Renegade, of course. Upon entering office, the former president came with a promise of change, and the Secret Service gave him a name choice that represented his mission.
Next: Eisenhower had two nicknames.
11. Dwight Eisenhower
- Dwight Eisenhower had two code names: “Scorecard” and “Providence.”
Throughout history, most presidents have only been give one nickname by the Secret Service. However, that was not the case for Dwight Eisenhower. The former president was once known as Scorecard and Providence by his security team.
Next: Was Lyndon B. Johnson’s nickname a joke for serving all four federal elected positions?
12. Lyndon B. Johnson
- Lyndon B. Johnson was assigned the name “Volunteer.”
To his security staff, Lyndon B. Johnson was known as Volunteer. As one of only four presidents to serve all four federal elected positions, we can’t help but wonder if the former president’s nickname was a running joke between him and the Secret Service.
Next: This president started the nicknames.
13. Harry S. Truman
- President Truman was best known as “General” to the Secret Service.
Harry S. Truman was the first president with a Secret Service code name and was best known by his security as General. Albeit not as creative as some of the others, this early nickname was probably given to him based on his military experience.
Next: You’ll never believe what the Secret Service calls Melania Trump.
14. First lady code names
Presidents aren’t the only ones given code names by the Secret Service, first ladies and vice presidents do, too. See some of the most hilarious (and fitting) nicknames given to first ladies, below.
- Melania Trump: “Muse”
- Hillary Clinton: “Evergreen”
- Michelle Obama: “Renaissance”
- Barbara Bush: “Tranquility”
- Nancy Reagan: “Rainbow”
- Jackie Kennedy: “Lace”
Next: Mike Pence also has a nickname.
15. Vice president code names
Like presidents, vice presidents and their wives are also given special nicknames. See some of the code names the Secret Service has given to vice presidents, below.
- Mike Pence: “Hoosier”
- Joe Biden: “Celtic”
- Dick Cheney: “Angler”
- Al Gore: “Sundance”
Next: The children of presidents are also assigned nicknames.
16. Family nicknames
Once the Secret Service determines a president’s nickname, they go on to come up with nicknames for their family, usually giving each family the same first letter for each. For example: Barack Obama’s nickname started with the letter “R,” so Michelle, Malia, and Sasha’s nicknames did, too. Take a look at some first family nicknames, below.
- Ivanka Trump: “Marvel”
- Donald Trump Jr.: “Mountaineer”
- Eric Trump: “Marksman”
- Malia Obama: “Radiance”
- Sasha Obama: “Rosebud”
- Chelsea Clinton: “Energy”
Next: The queen of England also has a Secret Service code name.
17. The queen of England
- The Secret Service refers to the queen as “Kittyhawk.”
Presidents and their families aren’t the only ones given funny code names. In fact, the Secret Service has some for various world leaders, including the queen of England — who is best known as Kittyhawk to the president’s security team.
Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!