HARTFORD, Conn. — Three top aides for Gov. Dannel Malloy have handed in their resignations and will leave the administration by early fall, according to the governor's Chief of Staff Brian Durand.
The planned upcoming changes to the senior staff are "in anticipation of allowing a new team to get settled before the midway point of the governor’s term," Durand said in a statement Wednesday morning.
Deputy Chief of Staff Mark Bergman, Senior Director of Policy and Government Affairs Paul Mounds, and Communications Director Devon Puglia will be leaving to pursue new professional opportunities, Duran said.
“Mark, Paul, and Devon have all been outstanding key members of our team. During a difficult economic period, they’ve helped my administration achieve major goals, including hundreds of millions of dollars in budget savings, improvements to our transportation and energy infrastructures, bringing crime to its lowest levels in decades, and so much more," Malloy said. They’ve worked long hours and served the people of Connecticut well. I wish each of them the best in their next endeavors.”
Last week, Malloy made a high-profile speech from the podium at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in support of presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Mounds has been with the governor’s office since 2011. Succeeding him will be Chris Smith, who is currently his deputy. Smith joined the Malloy Administration's Government Affairs office as a Senior Associate in December 2012. In November 2014, he was promoted to Deputy Director of Policy and Government Affairs. Previously, Smith was a lobbyist for Rome Smith & Lutz Government Relations, representing nonprofit organizations, trade associations, and businesses.
Succeeding Puglia as Communications Director will be Kelly Donnelly, who currently serves as Chief of Staff to Education Commissioner Dianna Wentzell, where she focuses on advancing and implementing the state’s priorities in elementary and secondary education. She previously served as the Department’s Director of Communications and Community Partnerships, where she managed press relations and acted as the state’s spokesperson for education. Previously, Donnelly served as the Deputy Communications Director for the New Jersey Democratic Assembly Campaign Committee and also the New Jersey Senate Democratic Majority in 2011.
No immediate plans to replace Bergman were announced.
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