Familiar names fill new GOP House caucus posts

The newly announced House GOP caucus staff includes some familiar state government names, including Executive Director Chas Anderson, who was in the news earlier this year after an investigation showed some conflict-of-interest problems.

As Anderson was leaving her job as deputy education commissioner in June, she procured a state contract for $5,000. The state investigation ruled she broke some conflict-of-interest rules but didn’t try to defraud the state.

She’s currently the project director for the National Math Science Initiative and has lots of experience at the Capitol: Before the Education Department job, she was committee administrator for the House Ways and Means Committee and also worked for Gov. Arne Carlson.

Other new staffers:

  • Erin Buie, executive assistant to the majority caucus. She’s worked on statewide political campaigns, was committee administrator for the caucus and has directed House Republican administrative support since 2007.
  • Ian Marsh, legislative director to the speaker. He is now executive assistant to Speaker-elect Kurt Zellers and directed the successful 2010 House Republican Campaign Committee effort.
  • Annie Paruccini, executive assistant to the speaker. She spent the past eight years working for Gov. Tim Pawlenty, managing his appointments and working as his director of federal affairs.
  • Bill Walsh, executive assistant to the majority leader. He also spent eight years with Pawlenty, in the Department of Education and the Department of Commerce.
  • Anna Bellin, administrative assistant to the majority leader. She’s been with the House Republican Caucus since 2003 and currently covers health and human services for the caucus research department.
  • Craig Stone, director of legislative services. He has two decades of state legislative staff experience and will retain his  current position directing the House Republican research and constituent services departments.
  • Jodi Boyne, director of public affairs. She’s now director of public affairs and communications for the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and previously worked for the House Republican Caucus, United HealthGroup, the City of Saint Paul and Weber Shandwick.
  • Kevin Watterson, director of media services. He stays in his current job, with the added duties of coordinating social media for House GOP members.
  • Margaret Van Heel, legislative assistant to the speaker.
  • Diana Stepanek, legislative assistant to the majority leader.

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