Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce and Chief of Staff John Quick speak to the attendees at Pierce’s swearing-in ceremony at the George A. Navarre Borough Administration Building on Monday, Nov. 6, 2017 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion, file)

Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce and Chief of Staff John Quick speak to the attendees at Pierce’s swearing-in ceremony at the George A. Navarre Borough Administration Building on Monday, Nov. 6, 2017 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion, file)

Borough chief of staff, John Quick, offered position in Dunleavy administration

Alaska Gov.-elect Mike Dunleavy has offered Kenai Peninsula Borough’s Mayor’s Office chief of staff, John Quick, the position of commissioner for the Department of Administration. Quick said he interviewed for the position last week and received the news on Thanksgiving.

“I was pleasantly surprised,” Quick said. “It’s a tremendous opportunity.”

The Department of Administration provides centralized administrative services to state agencies in matters of finance, personnel, labor relations, leasing of space, central mail distribution, property management, risk management, procurement, retirement and benefits programs, information and telecommunication systems, and operation and maintenance of 18 state-owned buildings in Juneau, Anchorage, Nome, Palmer and Fairbanks, according to the state’s website.

Quick will begin his new role Dec. 3 after serving the borough for a little over a year. He said the mayor will be revealing a plan for a new chief of staff very soon.

“It’s been a pleasure serving the Kenai Peninsula Borough,” Quick said. “It was a phenomenal opportunity to serve the mayor. Now, I look forward to serving the governor.”

Quick said despite the new position, he’s just a phone call away, and that his door is always open.

Dunleavy also takes office Dec. 3. Among the appointments Dunleavy’s transition team announced Monday were Jason Brune as Environmental Conservation commissioner and Adam Crum as health commissioner.

Dunleavy’s pick to lead the Department of Environmental Conservation has a resource development background. His pick for health commissioner is a workforce development company executive.

Dunleavy, a Republican former state senator, said in a statement that the status quo “came to a screeching halt” with his election. He said his appointees with help deliver state services in “innovative ways.”

Brune is a former executive director of the Resource Development Council who worked in public affairs for a former partner in the Pebble Mine project. He most recently has worked for the Alaska Native corporation Cook Inlet Region, Inc., as senior director of land and resources.

Crum’s bio, released by Dunleavy’s transition, says he has degrees in psychology and public health. Crum told The Associated Press he is not a “health care policy guy” but is experienced in putting together and leading teams and working on projects.

He said there are talented people working in the state Department of Health and Social Services.

Crum, who said he applied for the job, is executive vice president with Northern Industrial Training LLC.

In his new role, he said a focus will be on “people, not programs,” to make sure services are provided to those who need them most. Dunleavy has said he wants to review the state’s Medicaid program to see if it’s sustainable.

Becky Hultberg, president and CEO of the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association, said it’s a bit unusual to hire someone who hasn’t worked directly in the industry. But she said the department is big and complex and requires a leader with strong management skills. If Crum has those skills and surrounds himself with people who understand the complexities of health care, she said he could be a strong leader.

“I think we need to give him the benefit of the doubt,” said Hultberg, a former state commissioner of Administration who remembers being called inexperienced. She said her agency got things done because of the talent on her team.

Dunleavy named Donna Arduin as his budget director.

Arduin has worked with other Republican governors across the country, including as budget director for former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

The three commissioner picks are subject to legislative confirmation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.


More in News

Clem Tillion of Halibut Cove poses for a photo on Jan. 9, 2020, in Homer, Alaska. The veteran Alaska legislator was passing through Homer while waiting to take the M/V Tustumena ferry to Kodiak. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
Clem Tillion, PFD founder and former legislator, dies at 96

Tillion died Wedneday, Oct. 13, at Halibut Cove home.

Thunder Mountain High School on April 18.  Earlier this fall, vandalism including stolen soap dispensers and toilets clogged with foreign objects such as paper towel rolls were a problem at schools nationwide and in Juneau. But, principals say the local situation is improving. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)
After brief surge, vandalism subsiding at local high schools

Principals say internet trends, stress likely behind incidents.

In this Jan. 8, 2020, photo Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, heads to a briefing on Capitol Hill in Washington. An Alaska man faces federal charges after authorities allege he threatened to hire an assassin to kill Murkowski, according to court documents unsealed Wed., Oct. 6, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite,File)
Delta Junction man faces charges over threatening Murkowski’s life

Authorities allege he threatened to hire an assassin to kill the senator.

Donna Aderhold recites the Homer City Council oath of office and is sworn in for duty at the city council meeting on Oct. 11. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
New council members sworn into duty Monday

Newly-elected Homer City Council members Shelly Erickson and Jason Davis and re-elected… Continue reading

Runners participate in boys varsity race at the Ted McKenney XC Invitational on Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021, at Tsalteshi Trails just outside of Soldotna, Alaska. The trails recently reported incidents of vandalism and theft. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Vandalism and theft reported at Tsalteshi Trails

One trail user reported stolen skis recently and multiple signs have been defaced.

At left Bonita Banks, RN, Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) nurse at Homer Medical Center, and at right, Annie Garay, RN, Community Health Educator, pose for a photo at South Peninsula Hospital on Sept. 27, 2021, at Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Derotha Ferraro/South Peninsula Hospital)
New hospital community health educator starts

Garay, a Homer raised nurse, came home to ride out COVID-19, wound up doing pandemic nursing.

The logo for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is displayed inside the George A. Navarre Borough Admin Building on Thursday, July 22, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Montessori school goes to universal indoor masking

As of Tuesday, eight KPBSD schools were operating with universal indoor masking for staff and students.

Commercial fishing and other boats are moored in the Homer Harbor in this file photo. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
Seawatch: Crabbers look at cuts to quotas

Tanner, opilio crab quotas cut on top of cancellation of fall king crab fishery.

Gavel (Courtesy photo)
Judge sides with psychiatrists who alleged wrongful firing

Two psychiatrists said they were wrongfully fired when Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy took office.

Most Read