Florida Republican governor-elect Ron DeSantis claps during the 2018 Senate organizational session Tuesday, Nov. 20, in Florida’s Capitol building in Tallahassee. Lieutenant Governor-elect Jeanette Nunez sits beside him. CD Davidson-Hiers/Florida Phoenix
Here’s a look at who Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis has picked to head up the key positions in the governor’s office:
Shane Strum, Chief of Staff
Now working as a health care executive, Strum served as Chief of Staff for former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist. He served as vice chancellor of business development for Keiser University after serving as a 2010 transition adviser to outgoing Gov. Rick Scott.
He was senior vice president for the South Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners, which operates under the Memorial Healthcare System and is an independent special taxing district that includes hospitals across southern Broward County, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Strum also has been director of corporate and government affairs for Nova Southeastern University’s Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship, and he’s directed Business Development for Blue Frog Solutions, Inc., according to the Times.
Here are the other key staffers, with all background information provided by the governor’s office:
James Blair, Deputy Chief of Staff
Blair most recently managed the DeSantis Transition Advisory Committee efforts. He held a senior political role in the DeSantis campaign and served as a longtime political advisor to former Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran. Blair also led the political arm of the Republican Party of Florida’s House Majority effort during the 2016 election cycle. Blair is a graduate of Florida State University, where he earned a B.S. in Finance.
Adrian Lukis, Deputy Chief of Staff
Adrian Lukis will join the DeSantis administration from his position as Senior Advisor to Florida House Speaker Jose Oliva. Lukis began his career as an attorney in Orlando before moving to Tallahassee to work as committee attorney and Deputy Staff Director in the Florida House of Representatives. Prior to his position in the House speaker’s office, Adrian as served as Deputy Director of Agenda Development at the Republican Party of Florida. Lukis is a graduate of Florida State University and received his Juris Doctorate from the Florida State University College of Law.
Roger “Beau” Beaubien, Director of Cabinet Affairs
Beau Beaubien served as the Intergovernmental Affairs Liaison for the DeSantis transition, a role he also held during the DeSantis-Nuñez campaign. Beaubien is Attorney General Pam Bondi’s former Special Counsel for Cabinet and Legislative Affairs. He spent several years in private practice with the Coates Law Firm in Tallahassee. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and the Florida State University College of Law.
Stephanie Kopelousos, Director of Legislative Affairs
Currently the County Manager in Northeast Florida’s Clay County, Kopelouso previously served as Secretary of the Florida Department of Transportation, and before that, DOT Chief of Staff.
Helen Aguirre Ferré, Director of Communications
Ferre’ worked as Trump’s White House Director of Media Affairs for Latino and African-American news outlets from January 2017 through August 2018.
A Miami Shores native who is in the Florida Women’s Hall of Fame, she also worked for the Republican National Committee, wrote a periodic column for the Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald, hosted a public affairs television show, appeared on Unavision, and served as chair of the board of trustees at Miami-Dade College. After leaving the Trump administration, she went to work in communications at the National Endowment of the Arts.
She received her B.A. in Political Science from Barry University and her M.A. in Inter-American studies from the University of Miami.
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