Ralph Northam Announces Administration Appointments

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RICHMOND—Governor-elect Ralph Northam today announced additional appointments Governor’s Office and Cabinet, including naming Jennie O’Holleran as Policy Director, Carter Hutchinson as Deputy Policy Director, and Matt Mansell as Legislative Director. Rushawna Senior will join as a Senior Policy Analyst.


Carrie Caumont has been named Director of Scheduling.


Brian Coy will continue serving the Northam administration as Communications Director and Heather Fluit will continue in her role as Deputy Communications Director. Ofirah Yheskel will join the administration as Press Secretary.


The appointees will join a Northam administration focused on leading Virginia with bipartisan, common sense solutions to lift up all of its people.


Appointee Biographies

Jennie O’Holleran, Policy Director


Jennie O’Holleran currently serves as Policy Director for Governor Terry McAuliffe. She has served the McAuliffe Administration since January 2014 as Deputy Secretary of Education and as Senior Policy Advisor to the Governor. Prior to that, she served as Director of Virginia Relations at the George Washington University. She previously served in Governor Timothy M. Kaine’s policy office. Jennie grew up in Alexandria, VA and currently resides in the City of Richmond. She received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and her Master’s degree in Public Administration from The George Washington University


Carter Hutchinson, Deputy Policy Director


Carter Hutchinson currently serves as policy lead on Governor-Elect Ralph Northam’s transition team. Prior to that, he served as Research Director and policy lead on Governor-Elect Northam’s gubernatorial campaign. Carter has previously held roles on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, the campaigns of Governor Terry McAuliffe, and U.S. Senator Tim Kaine. He worked for the Virginia League of Conservation Voters and the Shenandoah Valley Network before that. Carter grew up in Staunton, Virginia and currently lives in Richmond. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Hampden-Sydney College.


Matt Mansell, Legislative Director


Matt Mansell currently serves as Vice President of Government and Regulatory Affairs for the Virginia Health Care Association-Virginia Center for Assisted Living (VHCA-VCAL). Prior to joining VHCA-VCAL, he led the government relations team at the Medical Society of Virginia. Matt has also previously served as Executive Director for the Virginia House Democratic Caucus. A graduate of Georgetown University, Matt is a native of Pulaski, Virginia and currently resides in Richmond.


Rushawna Senior, Senior Policy Analyst


Rushawna Senior has served as the Assistant Secretary of Veteran and Defense Affairs. Prior to joining the Governor’s Office she served as the Senior Assistant to City of Richmond Mayor Levar M. Stoney and previously worked at the Department of Motor Vehicles in the Business and Analytical Services Division. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Old Dominion University, and a Master’s in Public Administration from Virginia Tech. Rushawna is also a veteran of the Virginia Army National Guard.


Carrie Caumont, Director of Scheduling


Carrie Caumont most recently served as Director of Government Relations and Member Services at the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia. Prior to that, she served as Director of Scheduling for Governor Terry McAuliffe. She also served as a scheduler for Ed Ayers, president of University of Richmond, and for Governors Timothy M. Kaine and Mark R. Warner. Carrie received her bachelor’s degree in Political Science from James Madison University and lives in Glen Allen with her husband Darren and their two children.

Brian Coy, Communications Director


Brian Coy currently serves as Communications Director for Governor Terry McAuliffe. He previously served as Communications Director at the Democratic Party of Virginia, Press Secretary to a Governor’s race in Connecticut and as a strategic communications consultant to political, nonprofit and corporate clients. A graduate of James Madison University and an avid fan of Washington, D.C. sports and craft beer, Brian lives in Richmond with his wife and daughter.


Heather Fluit, Deputy Communications Director


Heather Fluit currently serves as Deputy Communications Director for Governor Terry McAuliffe, where she leads his speechwriting operation and special projects. Prior to her service in Richmond, Heather held the role of Press Secretary for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development during the Obama Administration. She began her career on Capitol Hill serving as a communications advisor to U.S. Senator Jim Webb (Virginia) and U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii). Heather earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of South Dakota.


Ofirah Yheskel, Press Secretary


Ofirah Yheskel currently serves as Press Secretary to Governor-Elect Northam’s transition and inaugural committees. Prior to that, she held the role of Press Secretary on the Ralph Northam for Governor campaign. Before beginning a career in Virginia, Ofirah served as Wisconsin Press Secretary for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, Communications Assistant to U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill (Missouri), and Communications Director to Texas State Representative Garnet Coleman. She began her career in Fort Worth, Texas serving as Deputy Press Secretary to the Wendy Davis for Governor campaign. Ofirah is a native of Stafford, Texas and proud graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Communications Studies and Bachelor of Arts in International Relations & Global Studies.

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