Holder plans to announce his intention to resign at a White House event on Thursday, although he'll stay on until his successor is confirmed, the Justice Department official said. The attorney general "finalized those plans in an hour-long conversation with the President at the White House residence over Labor Day weekend," the official said.
President Obama will make a "personnel announcement" Thursday at 4:30 p.m. ET, according to the White House Press Office.
A White House official told reporters that Obama will not announce a successor to Holder on Thursday and has not yet decided on one, according to the poll report.
Holder told staff at the DOJ about his decision Thursday morning and also called civil rights leader Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) and Ethel Kennedy, the widow of former attorney general Robert F. Kennedy, according to NPR.
Solicitor General Don Verrilli, who represents the U.S. at the Supreme Court, is one of the top candidates for the position, sources told NPR.
Some speculated that Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) was being considered for the Attorney General slot, but he said at a campaign event Thursday morning that the position is "not one for me right now.”
The New Yorker reported in February that Holder would step down at some point in 2014, but the Justice Department disputed the report.
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Thursday thanked Holder for his service in a statement.
"Attorney General Holder has been an extraordinary leader of the Department of Justice, and is to be congratulated for his service," Leahy said. "Under his leadership, the Department has had remarkable success in convicting terrorists and disrupting threats to national security, while upholding the Department’s mission of keeping our communities safe from crime and fighting fraud."
Sahil Kapur contributed reporting.