So where are all the Jindal secretaries going?

Out with the old, in with the new. Louisiana has a new governor, and he has come in and cleaned house—namely, the cabinet. Gov. John Bel Edwards is still in the process of filling his new cabinet, but one thing is clear: Few of his aides will be holdovers from the Jindal administration. So where are all these former state agency directors going? Here’s a list of who’s headed where and the few who are staying put.

—Robert Stewart


Commissioner of Administration

COVER-WIB.KristyNicholsOutgoing: Stafford Palmieri/Kristy Nichols

Where they’re headed: Nichols, who resigned September, will serve as vice president of government and corporate affairs at Ochsner Health System. The fate of her interim replacement, Stafford Palmieri, is uncertain.

Incoming: Jay Dardenne

Previous stops: lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state senator


Department of Revenue secretary

Tim Barfield.vuOutgoing: Tim Barfield

Where they’re headed: CSRS Inc. announced earlier this month that Barfield, a former Shaw Group executive, will join the company as its executive vice president.

Incoming: Kimberly Lewis Robinson

Previous stops: Partner at Jones Walker law firm; assistant secretary and confidential assistant, Department of Revenue


Department of Health and Hospitals secretary

Kathy Kliebert.vuOutgoing: Kathy Kliebert

Where they’re headed: Kliebert plans to retire in April to spend more time with her grandchildren, a DHH spokeswoman says.

Incoming: Rebekah Gee

Previous stops: state Medicaid medical director; assistant professor of health policy and management in obstetrics and gynecology at LSU.


Department of Transportation and Development secretary

Sherri LeBasOutgoing: Sherri LeBas

Where they’re headed: LeBas has retired, according to a DOTD spokesman.

Incoming: Shawn Wilson

Previous stops: chief of staff for the previous three DOTD secretaries


Louisiana Economic Development secretary

Steven Grissom.vuOutgoing: Steven Grissom

-Where they’re headed: Grissom’s future is uncertain at this point.

Incoming: Don Pierson

Previous stops: Senior director of business development, assistant secretary and chief marketing officer, LED


Louisiana Workforce Commission executive director

Curt EyesinkOutgoing: Curt Eysink

Where they’re headed: Eysink’s future is uncertain at this point.

Incoming: Ava Dejoie

Previous stops: statewide rapid response coordinator, LWC; business liaison, Louisiana Department of Education


Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority chairman

Chip KlineOutgoing: Chip Kline

Where they’re headed: Kline’s future is up in the air. His replacement, Johnny Bradberry, won’t start until the end of the month, a CPRA spokesman says, and no determination has been made whether Kline will remain on staff once Bradberry takes over.

Incoming: Johnny Bradberry

-Previous stops: vice president of business development, Volkert engineering firm; DOTD secretary under former Gov. Kathleen Blanco


Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness director

Kevin Davis.vuOutgoing: Kevin Davis

Where they’re headed: Davis’ future is uncertain at this point, though he’s rumored to be looking into other opportunities.

Incoming: James Waskom

Previous stops: Retired U.S. Army colonel; inspector general, Louisiana National Guard; former prosecutor, 19th Judicial District


Department of Environmental Quality secretary

Outgoing: Peggy Hatch

Where they’re headed: Hatch has retired, according to a DEQ spokesman.

Incoming: Chuck Brown

Previous stops: president and CEO, Brown and Associates


Department of Wildlife and Fisheries secretary

Robert Barham.cvbOutgoing: Robert Barham

Where they’re headed: Barham’s fate is uncertain, though he told Business Report back in September that he was preparing to move on and had met with LASERS, the state employee retirement system.

Incoming: Charlie Melancon

Previous stops: Former congressman, Louisiana’s 3rd District; former president and general manager, American Sugar Cane League.


Department of Veterans Affairs secretary

Thomas Enright.vuOutgoing: Thomas Enright/David LaCerte

Where they’re headed: Enright, who filled in temporarily after David LaCerte resigned in October amid a probe into conditions at state VA nursing homes, will stay on with the VA as executive counsel.

Incoming: Joey Strickland

Previous stops: retired U.S. Army Colonel; director of veterans affairs for former Gov. Mike Foster; deputy secretary of veterans affairs for former Gov. Kathleen Blanco



Department of Public Safety and Corrections secretary

Jimmy LeBlancJimmy LeBlanc





Louisiana State Police superintendent

Michael Edmonson







Inspector General

Stephen StreetStephen Street





Department of Natural Resources secretary

Stephen ChustzStephen Chustz





Department of Children and Family Services secretary

Suzy SonnierSuzy Sonnier





*Positions had not been announced by Gov. John Bel Edwards as of publication.

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