You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

The Scoop


Verbatim: Pence names more senior staff

Statement as issued Tuesday by the office of Mike Pence:

Carmel, IN – Governor-elect Mike Pence today announced the hire of four senior staff who will bring experience in state government, private law practice, and outreach efforts to the administration.

Heather Neal has been named Pence’s Legislative Director. She will serve as the chief legislative liaison for the Pence Administration. Neal has served as chief of staff at the Indiana Department of Education where she directed operations of the agency, which includes 55 percent of the state’s annual budget and an additional $1 billion in federal funds. Neal also was Governor Daniels’ first appointee as the state’s public access counselor and served as chief of staff for Secretary of State Todd Rokita.

Pence said, “Heather Neal has a distinguished record in public service. She has a proven ability to successfully lead legislative initiatives, and she will play a primary role in our efforts to bring our Roadmap for Indiana to members of the General Assembly. We are grateful to have someone of her integrity and experience on our team.”

Chris Crabtree, Political Director for Mike Pence for Indiana, will continue his work for Pence, serving as the Deputy Chief of Staff for External Operations and overseeing administration outreach and community relations in the governor’s office. In his role for the campaign, Crabtree traveled to all 92 counties with the governor-elect and worked to build relationships with organizations and community leaders across Indiana. He has served in a similar capacity for nearly 20 years for two members of Congress and Lt. Governor Skillman. Crabtree is a former U.S. Navy Public Affairs Officer.

“I have had the honor of working with Chris Crabtree throughout the duration of the campaign,” said Pence. “He possesses an innate understanding of the state and will work tirelessly on behalf of the administration to fully serve the people of Indiana for the next four years.”

Marilee Springer will join Pence’s team as Senior Policy Director. She currently is a partner at Ice Miller with the firm’s tax group. In that role, Springer represents tax-exempt and governmental entities, with a focus on private foundations and donors, colleges and universities, and health care providers. Springer was an integral part of the campaign policy team as a volunteer.

“As leader of our policy team, Marilee Springer will bring tremendous breadth and insight to the policy efforts,” said Pence. “She was instrumental in developing a number of our policy proposals during the campaign, and I look forward to working with her to advance our agenda.”

Jennifer Pavlik will serve as Director of Operations for Pence. She has worked in his Congressional office for 12 years, first as executive assistant and then as staff director. Pavlik previously worked for Rep. Mark Souder. She will be responsible for running the Governor’s office and managing his schedule.

Pence said Pavlik will provide excellent service to those who interact with the Governor’s office. “Jennifer Pavlik is an outstanding administrator who will serve Hoosiers well.”

The governor-elect will make additional hiring announcements later this week.

Send items for The Scoop to