Governor-Elect Andy Beshear Announces First Appointments

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor-Elect Andy Beshear is beginning to unveil who will be in his administration.

The Democrat announced four appointments on Thursday all who currently work in the Attorney General’s Office.

  • J. Michael Brown – Secretary of the Executive Cabinet
  • La Tasha Buckner – Office of the Governor, general counsel
  • Travis Mayo – Office of the Governor, deputy counsel
  • Crystal Staley – Director of Communications

Deputy Attorney General and Transition Chair J. Michael Brown has been named Secretary of the Executive Cabinet where he will lead the team of cabinet secretaries.

“This is an honor and I consider it to be the highlight of my professional career. Government exists to serve the people,” Brown said. “I view the people as my client, and will do everything within my ability to serve their best interests.”

La Tasha Buckner was named the general counsel of the Office of the Governor while Travis Mayo was named deputy counsel for the Office of the Governor both currently serve as attorneys within the Attorney General’s Office.

“The governor’s office sets the tone for an entire administration so it’s our pledge to create a state government that’s open, accessible and responsive to our citizens,” Buckner said. “I am looking forward to continuing to work to address the issues that matter to Kentuckians.”

“I am honored and excited for this opportunity to continue fighting for Kentuckians alongside Gov.-elect Beshear and being a part of Team Kentucky, a team with one common goal: a better Commonwealth,” Mayo said.

Crystal Staley will be the Director of Communications for the governor’s office she currently serves as the communications director of the Attorney General’s Office. 

“As we set out to achieve Gov.-elect Beshear’s bold vision of moving Kentucky forward, we are committed to setting a helpful tone in Frankfort so that all Kentuckians know their government is working for them,” said Staley.

“You know their qualifications, you know their work ethic and you know you can rely on them,” Beshear said. “These were easy initial appointments.”

Beshear said more announcements will come on Tuesday and then after Thanksgiving.

When new administrations take over is often customary for governors to appoint new cabinet secretaries, Beshear says the secretaries in place now are safe until after he crafts his first budget.

“I don’t anticipate shaking up cabinets at least before that budget is submitted,” Beshear said. “We have to make sure that we are addressing the most important tasks on hand in front of us and then once we got the full transition through getting leadership in place we’ll take a look and figure out where the best efficiencies are.”

The official appointments will not occur until Beshear is sworn in on December 10.