This news release is from the previous Governor's administration.
For Immediate Release: April 15, 2016
Contacts: Secretary of the Commonwealth's Office: Denise Burch,

Governor McAuliffe Announces Administration Appointments


RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced additional appointments to his Administration today. The appointees will join McAuliffe’s Administration focused on finding common ground with members of both parties on issues that will build a new Virginia economy and create more jobs across the Commonwealth.


Office of the Governor

Michelle Kirby, Special Assistant 

Michelle Kirby began as a Special Assistant in the Office of the Secretary of Education and most recently served as Executive Assistant to the Secretary of Natural Resources. Prior to that, Kirby served with AmeriCorps as a Virginia Community Corps member at Hanover County Department of Social Services. She was also the Volunteer Program Director and later, Office Manager for the Positive Vibe Foundation & Max’s Positive Vibe Café, working with individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities in Richmond, Virginia. A native of Hampton, Kirby graduated from York High School in Yorktown, Virginia. She holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University.


Secretariat of the Commonwealth

Kelly Thomasson, Secretary of the Commonwealth

Kelly Thomasson has served as the Deputy Secretary of the Commonwealth for Governor Terry McAuliffe since January 2014.  Before joining the administration, she worked for Senator Mark Warner for over 13 years in a various capacities including Projects Director in his Senate office and Director of Scheduling in the Office of the Governor. Kelly is a native of Richmond and received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Virginia Commonwealth University. She lives in Ashland with her husband, Clark Mercer, and two children.  She is involved in many community activities including serving on the board of the Ashland Main Street Association.


Secretariat of Natural Resources 

Rachel Levy, Executive Assistant to the Secretary of Natural Resources

Rachel Levy previously served as a Special Assistant in Constituent Services since July 2014. She was also liaison to the Governor’s Sexual Assault Task Force and staffed the Governor’s PERK Work Group. Prior to her appointment, Rachel interned at the White House in the Office of the Press Secretary. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from the University of California, Davis, and is currently seeking her Master’s in Public Administration from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.


Secretariat of the Commonwealth
Board Appointments

Board of Medical Assistance Services

  • Cara L. Coleman, JD, MPH of Waterford, Instructor of Pediatrics, INOVA Fairfax Campus, VCU School of Medicine
  • Rebecca E. Gwilt, Esq. of Chesterfield, Partner, Nixon Law Group
  • Karen S. Rheuban, MD* of Charlottesville, Professor of Pediatrics, Sr. Associate Dean for Continuing Medical Education & External Affairs, Medical Director, Office of Telemedicine, University of Virginia


Board of Trustees of the Virginia Retirement System

  • The Honorable J. Brandon Bell, II, CRPC of Roanoke, Certified Retirement Planning Counselor, (DBA) Brandon Bell Financial Partners


Joint Leadership Council of Veterans Service Organizations

  • John R. Clickener, Lt Col USMC (Ret.) of Tappahannock (representing the Marine Corps League Department of Virginia)


Real Estate Appraiser Board

  • The Honorable Edythe Frankel Kelleher of Vienna, Executive Director, Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation and Member, Vienna Town Council


*denotes reappointment