In a high-level and long-anticipated move, Dana Williamson, Gov. Jerry Brown’s cabinet secretary, is leaving the administration, Brown’s office said Tuesday.
The governor appointed Keely Bosler, Brown’s chief deputy director for budget, to replace her.
Williamson is expected to conduct work for the governor’s political operations from outside the Capitol. Brown’s office said she will open her own firm, Grace Public Affairs.
Williamson is the most senior adviser to leave the administration since Brown began his fourth and final term last year. The cabinet secretary is traditionally the second-most powerful staff member in the Governor’s Office and is the official to whom agency secretaries report.
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Williamson had been a senior adviser to Brown since 2011, the year he took office. The Democratic governor, after initially declining to have a cabinet secretary, promoted her to the post in 2013.
Bosler, 40, of Sacramento, has served as Brown’s chief deputy director for budget since that year. She was previously staff director for the California State Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee.
“Keely has done great work at the Department of Finance and will continue to be a huge asset in her new role,” Brown said in a prepared statement. “Dana has been a key member of my administration. With her energy, wit and insight, she has made an enormous contribution to all that we’ve accomplished.”
Bosler, a registered independent, will be paid $179,500 a year.