In one fell swoop, Kitzhaber names ten top advisors, including chief of staff Curtis Robinhold

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

In recent days, there had been some grumbling about the slow pace of staff announcements coming from John Kitzhaber's transition team.

It appears now that Kitzhaber's the sort of guy who'd rather make one big announcement than a bunch of little ones. He announced the names of ten top advisors on his gubernatorial team.

Headlining the list: Curtis Robinhold as chief of staff. Robinhold was a top aide to Kitzhaber the first time around, and has since worked in the alternative energy industry.

A few of the names that folks here will recognize:

On the jump, the full list, including bios...

Curtis Robinhold – Chief of Staff
Mr. Robinhold has 15 years of policy and energy experience as an entrepreneur, business leader, financial officer, and policy advisor. Most recently he served as the Chief Executive Officer of EnergyRM, a financial services company focused on providing financial solutions for energy-related investments in large buildings. He has also served on the board of the Oregon Business Association. Mr. Robinhold lives in Portland with his wife, Angela Uherbelau and their young daughter.

Tim Raphael –Communications Director
Mr. Raphael will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Communications Director. Mr. Raphael’s 18-year career in Oregon politics, policy and communications includes senior-level experience in government, business and non-profit organizations. He served as Chief-of-Staff to Metro Executive Officer Mike Burton, Government Affairs Director for Pacific Ethanol and most recently as Western Representative for the American Wind Energy Association. Mr. Raphael lives in Portland with his wife, Kate, and three children.

Brian Shipley – Legislative Director
Mr. Shipley served as Governor Kulongoski’s Deputy Chief of Staff and Legislative Director Prior to that he worked for Senate President Peter Courtney as his Director of Legislation, and as Chief of Staff for Senate Majority Leader Kate Brown. Shipley graduated from Willamette University with a degree in politics and environmental science, and received his law degree from Georgetown University.

Kendall Clawson – Executive Appointments Director
Ms. Clawson will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Executive Appointments Director. Ms. Clawson has worked in the non-profit arena for nearly 20 years, primarily in community development and non-profit management. Most recently she served as the Executive Director of the Q Center in Portland, metropolitan Portland’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning (LGBTQ) community. Ms. Clawson has a Bachelor’s degree in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She lives in Portland with her spouse of 20 years, Michele and their two dogs Riley and Cody.

Cheryl Myers - Minority Women and Emerging Small Business Advocate
Ms. Myers will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Minority Women and Emerging Small Business Advocate. Ms. Myers has been a business owner in Oregon for more than two decades. Ms. Myers is in her 7th year as a school board member for the North Clackamas School District and serves on numerous committees including the Diversity Task Force and Education Foundation. She’s also been president of her local Parent-Teacher-Student Association and she’s worked on her local school’s Site Council. Ms. Myers and her husband have two children.

Greg Wolf –Intergovernmental Relations Director
Mr. Wolf will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Intergovernmental Relations Director. He brings more than 30 years of experience working in state and local government and expertise in collaborative processes. Mr. Wolf serves as Director of Portland State University's National Policy Consensus Center, home of Oregon Solutions and Oregon Consensus. He is also the Director of the Policy Consensus Initiative a non-partisan organization co-chaired by two former Governors and composed of elected officials from 15 States. Before leading NPCC, Mr. Wolf served for seven years as the Community Policy Advisor for Oregon Governor Kitzhaber. Mr.Wolf is a native Oregonian and as a graduate of the University of Oregon.

Nancy Golden – Education Advisor
Dr. Golden will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Education Advisor. Dr. Golden will be on professional leave from her role as Superintendent of the Springfield School District. Before joining Springfield Public Schools, she was director of the administrative licensure program at the University of Oregon. She has also served as deputy superintendent in Albany School District and staff development and special education director in Eugene School District. In 2010, she received the Superintendent of the Year Award from the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators. Dr. Golden has been married to Roger Guthrie for 33 years and currently lives in Springfield. She has 2 children and 2 grandchildren.

Scott Nelson – Jobs & Economy Advisor
Mr. Nelson will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Jobs & Economy Advisor. Mr. Nelson served as policy director to Governor Kitzhaber's 2010 gubernatorial campaign and transition team. Prior to that, Mr. Nelson worked for United States Senator Byron Dorgan, the U.S. Department of Energy, and as an attorney in the Washington, DC, and Portland offices of K&L Gates LLP. Mr. Nelson was born and raised in Corvallis.

Duke Shepard – Labor and Human Services Advisor
Mr. Shepard will serve as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Labor and Human Services Advisor. Mr. Shepard worked for the Oregon AFL-CIO, where he directed the union federation’s grassroots political work and legislative program. Prior to the AFL-CIO, Mr. Shepard helped the Portland Business Alliance create a Regional Business Plan. Mr. Shepard lives in Portland with his wife Laura, and their daughter Graciela.

Mike Bonetto –Healthcare Advisor
Mr. Bonetto was previously announced as Governor-elect Kitzhaber’s Healthcare advisor. Mr. Bonetto was the Vice President of Business and Community Development for St. Charles Health System in Bend. Prior to that, Mr. Bonetto served as Senior Vice President of Planning and Development for Clear Choice Health Plans. His education includes a Bachelor of Arts from Occidental College, a Master of Science from California State University, Fullerton, a Master of Public Health and a Ph.D. in health policy from Oregon State University.

The press release notes that, "Further appointments are pending, including legal counsel, affirmative action and natural resources advisor."

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    I'll say this about the list -- damn, that's a bunch of strong talent.

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    I agree with Kari about the talent levels. I'm glad people of such talents are willing to serve. I wish them well.

    But I have a major concern: There appears to be no staff person responsible for international issues and relations. This is traditional but wrong. International issues have become more important. Getting our economy going will require making adjustments to the global economy - specifically, increasing exports, - more specifically, exports to Asia. The McKinsey partner who spoke at the Oregon Business Plan Summit described his first "crucible of innovation" as the "shift of economic wealth from the West to the East" (see here). I see no staff person assigned to work on this issue and no talent with an appropriate background.

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      I'd like to amend my concern slightly. I'm delighted to learn that Chief of Staff Robinhold has international experience. Jeff Mapes reports (here) that Robinhold "worked for BP during most of the last decade, living in England, Germany and South Africa." Good!!!

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    I agree with Mr. Porter. Perhaps John Lim would be available? :-) Regardless, we are close enough to Asia that it is in our best interest to have someone dedicated to "foreign" policy. I'm constantly amazed at the changes in Asia, especially China (progress and regress), in the twenty years since I went to school there as part of an exchange program at Willamette University. We ignore it at our own economic (and potentially defense) peril.

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      Sure. And if he'd been picked by a Republican Governor, it's likely that he'd have been picked for entirely different reasons - and with an entirely different mission.

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        I do want to make it clear that, my partisan jab aside, I think Robinhold is a good pick. Among other things, he used to work for Congressman DeFazio before joining the first Kitzhaber Administration so he has some Lane County roots. Local folks speak very highly of him.

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          Curtis is one of those people while growing up who always struck me as exceptionally intelligent, conscientious, and competent in all that he does. While I was personally surprised to learn of this appointment, I am not the least bit surprised at his ability to get it.

          Kitzhaber is off to a great start!

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    I'm very happy about Cheryl Myers' appointment -- she is such a huge talent and Kitzhaber is lucky to have her involved. Go Cheryl!

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