Many top jobs open at Department of Commerce

Susan Bell, the commissioner of the Department of Commerce, is going to be busy in the days and weeks ahead filling some of the top jobs in the department.

On Wednesday of this week, Bell announced that Daniel Patrick O’Tierney, the department’s sole deputy commissioner, was leaving. His last day will be Friday, Nov. 22. Circumstances surrounding his departure are unknown.

Earlier this week, the director of the Division of Insurance, Bret Kolb, submitted his resignation. Kolb is leaving to accept a position as director of business development for Palmer-based Victory Ministries of Alaska. According to his resignation letter, his last day of state service will be December 19th.

The department’s Division of Banking and Securities’ director, Lorie Hovanec, is retiring December 1. Prior to this position, she was a practicing trusts and estates attorney and vice president with Wells Fargo Trust Company.

The commissioner’s special assistant and legislative liaison, Crystal Koeneman, has also recently submitted her resignation and has accepted a position with Rep. Lora Reinbold (R – Eagle River) as a legislative staffer starting sometime in December.

All of the changes don’t come at the best of times for the department. The legislative session is only weeks away, and the holidays, which aren’t the best hiring time, are nearly here.

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4 thoughts on “Many top jobs open at Department of Commerce

  1. BJM

    Why in the world do Departments need special assistants, legislative liaisons and assistant commissioners? What’s the difference between deputy commissioners and assistanrs ? Commerce is a bloated department. Hopefully this year the legislature will make some real cuts to the department and stop the waste.

  2. 49 stars

    The Department of Commerce is a train wreck. No one is running the department or overseeing the agencies. It’s a pot of wasted money where the senior folks amuse themselves with international travel. It’s a great department to get a job if you want to earn frequent flyer miles. The legislature needs to review this department’s budgets with a critical eye.

  3. GG

    This blog is the best political blog in Alaska by a mile. Your information is usually first, accurate, insightful, useful and doesn’t go on and on about nothingness. Keep up the good work. You’ve become more important to me as a news source than anything else in Alaska.

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