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Governor-elect Steve Sisolak reveals chief of staff, other hires

Updated December 31, 2018 - 7:23 pm

CARSON CITY — Nevada Gov.-elect Steve Sisolak on Monday named a veteran Democratic campaign strategist as his chief of staff and announced several other key hires for his incoming administration.

In a news release, Sisolak announced that Michelle White, the executive director of his transition team who previously worked as the state director for For Our Future in the 2018 election, will serve as his chief of staff.

White also worked as the deputy state director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign in Nevada. White also worked as a senior advisor to Democratic leadership in previous legislative sessions.

J. Brin Gibson was named as Sisolak’s general counsel. Gibson, the son of Clark County Commissioner Jim Gibson, currently works as the first assistant attorney general to Attorney General Adam Laxalt and heads the office’s gaming division.

Sisolak’s other hirings come from the state and local government ranks, as well as from his campaign. They include:

■ Scott Gilles as senior advisor. Gilles has worked in government affairs and legislative relations for Reno since 2015 and previously worked as deputy secretary of state for elections in Nevada.

■ Allison Combs as policy director. For six years, Combs has been is the assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs and director of public policy for the Nevada System of Higher Education. Before that, she spent 18 years with the Nevada Legislative Counsel Bureau.

■ Francisco Morales as director of public affairs and community relations. Morales has been the deputy director of Sisolak’s transition team and was political director for Sisolak’s gubernatorial campaign. He also worked for U.S. Rep. Dina Titus as a senior representative and adviser.

■ Keith J.D. Hightower as legislative and intergovernmental affairs director. Hightower has worked in that same capacity under outgoing Gov. Brian Sandoval since August.

“I am excited to be able to have such talented individuals as part of my administration,” Sisolak said in a statement. “The experience and skills these members will bring to this team cannot be matched, and I am honored to have them by my side as we work to keep Nevada moving forward.”

Sisolak previously announced he would keep three of Sandoval’s directors in the departments of Wildlife, Conservation and Natural Resources, and Veterans Services, and he named veteran state budget worker Susan Brown as his budget director.

Sisolak will be sworn in on Jan. 7.

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Colton Lochhead at clochhead@reviewjournal.com or 775-461-3820. Follow @ColtonLochhead on Twitter.

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