Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin tapped former Trump Department of Labor (DOL) Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management George “Bryan” Slater to serve as Virginia Secretary of Labor.
“Workforce development will play a crucial part of jumpstarting our economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Bryan’s experience and leadership will be critical to the development of talent, training of workers, and protection of Virginia’s right-to-work laws that will attract investment to Virginia,” Youngkin said in the Thursday announcement.
Slater has extensive experience both in Richmond and D.C. administrations. From 1998 to 2001, he served Governor James Gilmore as Secretary of Administration. He’s also worked in Republican political circles, serving as Gilmore campaign director, Republican Party of Georgia Executive Director, and as Republican National Committee Political Director earlier in his career.
In a September 2020 piece for the Federal News Network, Slater touted his work at the DOL introducing efficiencies for the agency by modernizing information technology systems.
“I have the privilege of overseeing the DOL’s information technology, human resources and procurement, along with a variety of other administrative areas, during a transformative time for the federal government. Over the past three years, we have embraced President Donald Trump’s agenda, focusing aggressively on improving efficiency and effectiveness,” he wrote.
Slater will be responsible for the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC), which has been very slow to update antiquated IT systems. That was partly responsible for the VEC’s huge backlog of certain kinds of claims and hours-long call center wait times.
Upgrades and more funding are already being implemented at the agency, something Youngkin has also called for. Youngkin has also said he would focus on cutting regulation and bringing more jobs to Virginia.
“On Day One, Virginia will be open for business as we aim to make government work for all Virginians, Bryan will be a key partner in fixing the Virginia Employment Commission and delivering results for the Commonwealth.”
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