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Tag: Susan Dreyfus


Gov. Gregoire appoints new DSHS director, Arnold-Williams

Robin Arnold-Williams is no stranger to the state’s largest agency, having led it from March 2005 to January 2008.

On Jan. 3 she replaces Susan Dreyfus, who is leaving the Department of Social and Health Services after nearly three years to return to Wisconsin.

Here’s Gov. Chris Gregoire‘s news release today announcing the appointment, which is subject to Senate confirmation:

Gov. Gregoire appoints new DSHS director

OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire has appointed Robin Arnold-Williams to be the Department of Social and Health Service’s new director. Arnold-Williams is a veteran of the agency, having led it for several years

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Head of state’s largest agency will leave at year’s end

Susan Dreyfus will be the latest member of Gov. Chris Gregoire‘s administration to leave when she goes back to her old company in Wisconsin.

Dreyfus has led Washington’s Department of Social and Health Services since May 2009, while racking up the phone minutes with her husband, Lee, who stayed in Wisconsin as a circuit court judge.

Gregoire announced today Dreyfus would return to Wisconsin in January after the Legislature finishes an emergency session where it could make human services cuts that Dreyfus calls “unconscionable.”

Gregoire said Dreyfus would become CEO and president of Milwaukee-based nonprofit Families International and its subsidiary, the Alliance for Children and Families. She has served as vice president of the companies. The governor said she would replace Peter Goldberg, who died Aug. 12.

Dreyfus praised Washington in a statement and then said: Read more »


Welfare responsibility changing hands

The state’s top official overseeing welfare benefits is out and a temporary replacement is in.

Troy Hutson resigned this week from his post as assistant secretary of the Department of Social and Health Services. He said he’s leaving to be closer to his wife and three school-age children in Seattle and avoid the long commute to Olympia.

Republicans have complained about the state’s management of welfare following KING-5 reports about cash benefits being used in some weird places like strip clubs and casinos. Some, like Sen. Mike Carrell of Lakewood, have criticized Hutson specifically. And Hutson doesn’t have a new job lined up. So I asked if he was under pressure to leave.

Hutson says no; so does his boss, DSHS Secretary Susan Dreyfus, who had nothing but good things to say about his tenure.

Hutson said he took the job in 2008 to help the poor, including the single women with children who are the main recipients of federal-state Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. He’s proud of doing that, but he cited a shifting political mood as evidenced by the attacks centered around welfare misuse. He said:

The whole conversation in Olympia has changed. Three years ago I think everybody really was concerned with how to deal with the rising caseload (of disadvantaged people coming onto government programs). I think the conversation is now, not just here but nationally, people are beating up on state employees and they’re beating up on the poor and all these other things. It’s not worth the sacrifice to my family to continue to do this.

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