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Gov.-elect Inslee is retaining top leaders for State Patrol and Corrections agencies

Post by Brad Shannon / The Olympian on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
January 11, 2013 3:06 pm

Gov.-elect Jay Inslee announced two more appointments to his Cabinet today, saying he’ll retain State Patrol Chief John Batiste and Corrections Secretary Bernard Warner. The re-hires come a day after the incoming Democratic governor named five other appointments to Cabinet posts.

Gov. Chris Gregoire had appointed both agency directors, but the state troopers’ union had been pressuring for someone to replace Batiste.

The union had wanted Lakewood Police Chief Bret Farrar as leader of the patrol, complaining that the current chief was out of touch.

Inslee’s full announcement is here:

Governor-Elect Jay Inslee Fills Public Safety Posts
Olympia – Praising their leadership of two critical public safety agencies, Governor-Elect Jay Inslee today announced the re-appointment of Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste and Department of Corrections Secretary Bernard Warner.
Batiste joined WSP in 1978 and held a variety of leadership positions before becoming Assistant Chief of Police in Tacoma in 2002. He was named Deputy Chief of the Port of Seattle Police Department in 2003, where he served for two years before taking over Washington State Patrol in 2005.
“Chief Batiste has demonstrated the kind of results-oriented leadership that I believe every agency in the state needs,” said Governor-Elect Inslee. “He has had a distinguished career in law enforcement and I know he will continue to improve an already outstanding agency.”
Batiste has been recognized with an Outstanding Leadership award from the International Association of Chiefs of Police, The Martha Irwin Award for Lifetime Achievement in Highway Safety and the International Association of Chiefs of Police President’s Award, among many others. Under his leadership, WSP has won more than a dozen national awards.
“The men and women of WSP put their lives on the line every day to protect Washingtonians,” Chief Batiste said. “I’m proud of our department and I’m honored to continue leading our outstanding troopers and civilian employees.”
Department of Corrections Secretary Bernard Warner was first appointed in 2011 after serving as Chief Deputy Secretary, Juvenile Justice in California from 2005 to 2010. Warner began his career as a line worker at the State Penitentiary in Walla Walla and has held leadership posts in three state corrections departments.
“In a relatively short time, Bernie has made significant improvements in prison safety, in effective use of resources, and in building creative partnerships that help both offenders and the community,” said Governor-Elect Inslee.
“Governor-Elect Inslee is committed to constant improvement in how state agencies operate, and I share that commitment,” said Secretary Warner. “We’ve made significant improvements over the past 18 months, and I look forward to continuing to make our corrections system better.”
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Inslee campaigned saying he would bring in outsiders to be “disruptive” forces for change, but most of his appointments have had past state-government experience.

Go here for a list of his hiring announcements, here for a report on Thursday’s announcements, here for a report on his legislative director and communications director, and here on his budget director.

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