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Gov.-elect Tina Kotek announces chief of staff, other members of transition team

Gov.-elect Tina Kotek, during March visit to Bend
KTVZ file
Gov.-elect Tina Kotek, during March visit to Bend

PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Oregon Governor-elect Tina Kotek announced Tuesday that Andrea Cooper will be joining her administration as her incoming chief of staff and identified additional members of her transition team. 

Cooper brings 15 years of experience in Oregon government and public service, including several leadership roles serving in the Oregon Legislature, advocating on behalf of working families, and most recently working as the deputy chief of staff to Governor Kate Brown. Cooper will become the first Black woman to serve in this top executive role in Oregon.

In her volunteer life, Cooper has served as Board Chair for Bradley Angle, a domestic violence agency that empowers survivors of domestic abuse. She also served on the boards of  Emerge Oregon, a statewide group dedicated to empowering Democratic women to run for office, and the Alliance for Youth, a national organization working to strengthen local youth organizing and power. 

Cooper grew up in Oregon and California and is a lifelong fan of the Portland Trail Blazers. She received her B.A. from the University of Portland with a major in Political Science.

“Andrea Cooper is a skilled manager and a strategic, collaborative leader. She is ready to build a team of problem-solvers who will always put the needs of the people of Oregon first,” said Governor-elect Kotek. “I’m thrilled to have her coming on board.”

In addition, Kotek named several key hires for her transition team, which will focus on setting up the incoming administration to start delivering results for Oregonians on Day One. The following people are joining Transition Director Tim Inman, who is taking a partial leave from his current role as the University Secretary and Advisor to the President of the University of Oregon to lead the transition:

  • Annaliese Dolph - Behavioral Health Lead. Dolph previously served as a policy advisor in the Speaker’s Office and is an attorney with over a decade of experience working on health policy. She will continue to serve in the incoming Kotek administration after assisting with the transition. 
  • Karin Power - Policy Lead. Power, the outgoing State Representative for HD 41 and Interim Executive Director of Business for a Better Portland, is volunteering her time to assist with policy work during the transition. 
  • Taylor Smiley Wolfe - Housing and Homelessness Lead. Smiley Wolfe previously served as policy director in the Speaker’s Office and Director of Policy and Planning at Home Forward. She will continue to serve in the incoming Kotek administration after assisting with the transition. 
  • Abby Tibbs - Budget Lead. Tibbs, an attorney with over 20 years of public affairs and operations experience, has taken a temporary leave from her position as vice president of public affairs at Oregon Health and Science University to assist with the development of the Governor’s Recommended Budget.

The transition team is also convening work groups with a broader cross section of leaders to advise on systems and structures that will set up the incoming Kotek administration for success in driving her agenda, improving service delivery for Oregonians, and increasing accountability across state government.

“This team works hard, leads with integrity, and knows how to deliver results. I’m grateful for their service to Oregon and we are ready to get to work,” said Governor-elect Kotek. “In the weeks leading up to inauguration, our focus will be on getting ready to address issues of shared concern across our state: homelessness, mental health and addiction, and successful schools.”

Article Topic Follows: Oregon-Northwest

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