By Corinne Murdock |
Gov. Katie Hobbs selected her former legislative colleague and longtime lobbyist, Chad Campbell, as her replacement chief of staff. The appointment comes less than a week after the resignation of Hobbs’ longtime right-hand woman, Allie Bones: first as assistant secretary of state and, until recently, chief of staff.
Campbell formerly served as the House Minority Leader for the Democrats for four years of his eight-year tenure as a state representative from 2007 to 2015. For four years, Campbell and Hobbs represented the same district; Hobbs took over as minority leader for Campbell in 2015.
Campbell’s legacy includes passing the 2013 Medicaid expansion under former Gov. Jan Brewer, and lobbying for the 2020 legalization of marijuana through Proposition 207.
Campbell served on both of Hobbs’ transition teams, first as secretary of state and then governor this past year. He will assume his position on June 5.
Last year, Campbell co-founded Lumen Strategies Arizona alongside Stacy Pearson, known for assisting in the 2016 defeat of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the 2020 legalization of marijuana. Prior to that, Campbell served as an executive for two different consultancy firms: Strategies 360 and Resolute Consulting.
Campbell proved his political acumen as recently as the last election, after he predicted the failure of Maricopa County Attorney candidate Julie Gunnigle’s campaign, describing it as resembling the “worst” he’d seen over the last 30 years. Campbell made the remarks in a video call with other Democratic leaders.
“[Gunnigle’s campaign] reminds me of that: not knowing the audience, not knowing the issues that matter to a lot of voters,” stated Campbell. “And I will say this: the vast majority of Democrats that I know all believe that there needs to be reforms in law enforcement, we believe there needs to be more accountability. But almost everybody I talk to, nobody wants to defund the police, everybody knows we need more public safety resources, which will actually make more accountability.”
Hobbs’ recently departed chief of staff, Bones, resigned last week. Bones was the latest in a rapid series of turnovers in Hobbs’ administration.
Bones’ resignation reflected a pattern from Hobbs’ last female predecessor, Jan Brewer, whose first chief of staff also departed within a year. However, both of former Gov. Doug Ducey’s chiefs of staff lasted years.
Bones resignation also followed months of unsuccessful nominations to outfit Hobbs’ cabinet. On Wednesday, the Senate Committee on Director Nominations rejected the Registrar of Contractors nominee, former State Sen. Martin Quezada.
In February, Hobbs faced the retraction of two nominees: Dr. Theresa Cullen as director of Arizona Department of Health Services, and Matthew Stewart as director of the Department of Child Services.