Gov. Edwards Fills College Board Jobs, Mainly With Donors
BATON ROUGE (AP) — Gov. John Bel Edwards tapped 15 people over the holidays to fill vacancies for Louisiana's college management boards, many of them contributors to the governor's campaign fund.
He named six people to the 15-member Board of Regents, the top policymaking and budgeting panel for Louisiana public higher education.
"The appointees I have named to the board bring an array of professional and educational expertise from higher education institutions across Louisiana," the Democratic governor said in a statement. "I am looking forward to working with them to build a brighter future for Louisiana's students."
Edwards selected: Blake David, a Lafayette lawyer; Darren Mire, valuation director for the Orleans Parish tax assessor's office; W. Clinton "Bubba" Rasberry, a Shreveport businessman and previous Regents board member; Jacqueline Vines Wyatt, a former Cox Communications executive from Prairieville; T. Jay Seale III, a Hammond lawyer; and Charles McDonald, a former state lawmaker from Sterlington who worked to create the TOPS tuition program.
David, Rasberry, Seale and McDonald each donated to Edwards' campaign.
Edwards also named five members to the Southern University System board and four people to the University of Louisiana System board. At least four of the Southern board appointees and two of the UL board picks were Edwards campaign contributors or worked with companies that donated to him.
The higher education board jobs are considered among some of the choicest appointments made by a governor outside of staff and cabinet leadership positions. Louisiana's governors often reserve the positions for campaign donors.