The State Worker

Jerry Brown appoints SEIU spokesman to CalHR post

After working seven years for California’s largest public employee union, Jim Zamora has been named deputy director of communications for the state’s Department of Human Resources.

Prior to the appointment by Gov. Jerry Brown, Zamora worked in the communications shop for SEIU Local 1000. His duties included handling media relations and internal communications for the 95,000-employee union.

He replaces Pat McConahay, who recently left state service to work for a nonprofit. Like McConahay, Zamora’s résumé includes a long journalism career. From 1990 to 2008 he worked as a reporter or editor for the Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Examiner and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Zamora joins a department that Brown has tasked with overhauling how the state recruits and retains employees. CalHR also negotiates labor contracts with 21 bargaining units that represent nearly 200,000 rank-and-file employees under gubernatorial authority. The administration is in talks with four unions now, including the California Correctional Peace Officers Association.

Zamora, a 56-year-old Democrat, will earn $87,024 per year in his new job. The appointment does not require Senate confirmation.

Call Jon Ortiz, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 321-1043.