Gov.-elect Wes Moore announced several key cabinet nominations on Tuesday, picking familiar names in Maryland politics and government, including two small-city mayors.
The latest announcement nearly completes the team of cabinet secretaries who will head up departments and run state government for the Moore administration.
The latest appointments are:
- Jake Day as secretary of housing and community development. Day is the mayor of Salisbury, where he has focused on downtown revitalization. He’s also a major in the Army National Guard.
- Kevin Atticks as secretary of agriculture. Atticks currently heads Grow & Fortify, which includes the trade groups for Maryland’s breweries, wineries and distilleries. He’s a past president of the Maryland Agricultural Resource Council.
- Serena McIlwain as secretary of environment. She comes from the West Coast, where she was undersecretary the California Environmental Protection Agency. She has prior experience with the U.S. EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy.
- Carol Beatty will continue on as secretary of disabilities, a role she has held under outgoing Gov. Larry Hogan since 2015. She previously was director of The Arc of Howard County.
- Josh Kurtz as secretary of natural resources. Kurtz is currently Maryland executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, a multistate nonprofit organization that advocates for the health of the bay.
- Rebecca Flora as secretary of planning. She is a consultant and project manager focused on sustainability.
- Carmel Roques as secretary of aging. She has worked as a health care and senior care executive, including as president and CEO of Keswick Multi-Care Center in Baltimore.
- Kevin Anderson as secretary of commerce. He is the founder and CEO of Cardinal Atlantic Holdings, an economic development firm “targeting scaled social impact and investment in urban centers,” according to the Moore team.
- Emily Keller as special secretary of opioid response. Keller is the mayor of Hagerstown and previously was a City Council member, and also runs an insurance agency. The position of special secretary of opioid response does not exist in Hogan’s administration, though he has had a director of the Maryland Opioid Operational Command Center.
With these nominations, Moore is close to filling out the team of advisors who will run state government. He still has a few key positions left, including a secretary of transportation, who will need to consult with Moore on key decisions, including whether to continue a proposal to add privately built toll lanes to highways in the D.C. suburbs and how to resume planning for an east-west transit line in Baltimore.
Moore had been announcing cabinet secretaries at a slower pace than past governors, but he has announced a flurry of picks in the past week as his inauguration approaches.
Cabinet secretaries are subject to confirmation by the Maryland Senate.
Moore, a Democrat, will be sworn into office as Maryland’s 63rd governor at noon on Wednesday. He soundly defeated Republican candidate Dan Cox, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump and ran a low-budget campaign.