Governor picks acting heads

Ten commissioners selected until Murkowski permanently fills positions

Posted: Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Gov. Frank Murkowski has appointed 10 temporary commissioners to fill positions vacated by those appointed by former Gov. Tony Knowles.

Commissioners under the Knowles administration ended their terms of employment on Monday, when Murkowski was sworn in as governor.

Because of heightened concerns for homeland security, Commissioner of Public Safety Del Smith and Commissioner of Military and Veteran Affairs Adj. Gen. Phillip Oates will continue to serve until replacements are found, the Murkowski transition team said.

Michael Haller, a spokesman for the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, said the decision to retain commissioners dealing with public safety is not unusual considering the qualifications for the jobs.

"You have to have somebody who is specifically qualified for the position," Haller said. "There are some very highly qualified people. I know that the governor will come to his decision (on who will replace Oates) based on recommendations from his transition team."

Commissioner of Education and Early Development Shirley Holloway also will continue to serve until a replacement is found, according to the Murkowski transition office.

Lt. Gov. Loren Leman announced last week that Laura Glaiser will serve as the director of the Division of Elections. She worked in the division from 1991 to 1992 and in the lieutenant governor's office from 1992 to 1994. More recently, she has served as legislative staff for Fairbanks Republican Pete Kelly.

The trsansition team said the following personnel will fill commissioner vacancies in their respective departments until the positions are filled permanently:

• Department of Natural Resources: Deputy Commissioner Marty Rutherford.

• Department of Fish and Game: Deputy Commissioner Kevin Duffey.

• Department of Environmental Conservation: Deputy Commissioner Kurt Frederiksson.

• Department of Administration: Director of Personnel Sharon Barton.

• Department of Revenue: Deputy Commissioner Larry Persily.

• Department of Transportation: Director of Design and Engineering Services Mike Downing.

• Department of Labor: Director of Administrative Services Remond Henderson.

• Department of Community and Economic Development: Director of Administrative Services Tom Lawson.

• Department of Health and Social Services: Director of Medical Services Bob Labbe.

• Department of Corrections: Director of Administrative Services Duane Peeples.

Timothy Inklebarger can be reached at

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