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Locke Begins To Fill Staff, Cabinet Posts

Gov.-elect Gary Locke on Tuesday announced a batch of appointees - experienced bureaucrats with ties either to him or previous Democratic administrations.

Locke introduced six Cabinet agency directors and five senior staff members during his appearance at a legislative forum sponsored by The Associated Press. His administration takes office Jan. 15.

Several of the agency directors already hold top posts in the Lowry administration, two others currently work for Locke in the King County government and one was his campaign manager.

Locke praised the group, which included five women and three minorities, as a diverse crop of proven administrators who are “experienced, innovative and pressure-tested.”

One of the top appointments was that of Dick Thompson to the key post of budget director. As head of the Office of Financial Management, Thompson will compile the budget proposals from various agencies and advise the governor and Legislature on financial matters.

Thompson has been president of United Way of Seattle since 1993. He was secretary of the Department of Social and Health Services from 1989 to 1992 under former Gov. Booth Gardner.

Gary Moore, currently director of the state Employment Security department, will change hats and lead the Department of Labor and Industries. He’ll replace Lowry appointee Mark Brown, who is resigning.

Other agency directors appointed Tuesday were:

Annette Sandberg as chief of the Washington State Patrol, a post she’s held since April 1995.

Marsha Tadano Long, a deputy supervisor at the Department of Natural Resources since 1993, who will head the Department of General Administration.

Evelyn Yenson, director of the state lottery since 1987, who will become director of the Department of Licensing.

John Charles, manager of King County’s records division, who will be director of Retirement Systems.

Locke’s staff appointments were:

Everett Billingslea, attorney for the Quality Food Centers supermarket chain, who will be Locke’s chief counsel.

Fred Stephens, King County’s director of Information and Administrative Services since 1994, who will serve as a deputy to Locke’s chief of staff, Joe Dear.

Marty Brown, a legislative staff veteran, who will be Locke’s chief lobbyist to the Legislature.

Ann Daley, an assistant state treasurer, who will be Locke’s director of policy.

DeLee Shoemaker, Locke’s campaign manager, who will be director of external affairs in the governor’s office.

Tuesday’s appointments were just the beginning. Locke takes office in a week, and there are nearly 30 immediate positions to be filled, including the directors of the agencies that oversee prisons, the environment and the welfare system. He also has at least two dozen positions left to fill in the governor’s office.

Locke said applicants for various jobs are being screened, and he expects to announce more appointments on Thursday. He said the position overseeing the prison system probably won’t be filled before his inauguration because his transition team is conducting a nationwide search.