Inslee chief of staff stepping down in February, transitioning to private sector

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The governor’s office today announced that Jamila Thomas, Gov. Jay Inslee’s chief of staff, will be stepping down in early February 2024. Thomas has accepted the position of chief administrative officer at WSECU and will begin her new role in March.

Thomas has served as Inslee’s chief of staff since November 2020. Prior to that, she served as chief of staff to Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal and to former House of Representatives Speaker Frank Chopp. She’s provided strategic counsel to the governor and state agencies throughout the pandemic recovery, and put her extensive legislative experience to use in advancing the governor’s priorities around housing, behavioral health, education and climate change.

“Jamila has been a highly trusted adviser to me and an unwavering advocate for the people of Washington throughout her three years in my office,” Inslee said. “We’ve faced a lot of challenges and hard decisions in the aftermath of COVID-19, and her priority is always on determining what the right thing is to do for our children and our communities. I’ve deeply appreciated her leadership and friendship.”

“It has been an honor to work for Governor Inslee and his entire team,” Thomas said. “He is a force of nature who deeply cares about the people of this state and our physical environment. His can-do leadership, positive outlook, and dedication to the people of Washington state has had meaningful and lasting impact. He is truly one of a kind and I am so proud to have had the opportunity to work alongside him.” 

The Office of the Governor is planning for Thomas’s departure and hopes to announce a new chief of staff after the start of the 2024 legislative session.