Arkansas Governor-elect Announces Kevin Crass as Executive Director of the Transition

November 10, 2022
Arkansas Governor-elect Announces Kevin Crass as Executive Director of the Transition
—Governor-elect Sarah Huckabee Sanders today announced her selection of a highly respected litigator and longtime Little Rock attorney Kevin Crass as her Executive Director of the transition, as well as the appointment of nine transition staff members. 
“Kevin Crass has been a trusted friend and accomplished attorney for many years, and I am pleased to announce that he has agreed to serve as the Executive Director of the transition,” Sanders said. “Kevin brings significant knowledge and relationships to this role, and I have complete confidence in his abilities to help me be ready to assume the role of governor on day one and begin taking our state to the top. Kevin will also be assisted in this important work by several individuals who were a part of our historic victory on election night and who bring their own incredible experiences and expertise. There is a lot of work to do and a short time to do it, but this team will get it done.”
“I have known Sarah for decades, and I am excited for the opportunity to assist our Governor-elect in building her administration,” Crass said. “The Governor-elect has a vision and plan for Arkansas, and I look forward to working with this capable transition leadership team to set her up for success on day one.”
The Governor-elect is also launching today govelect.arkansas.gov—a website where individuals can go to find out information about the transition and submit applications to serve in the Sanders Administration or on a board or commission. 
Sanders Transition Staff
Executive Director Kevin A. Crass is a senior partner in the Litigation Practice Group at Friday, Eldredge & Clark, LLP in Little Rock. He focuses his practice on significant, complex business litigation in federal and state court. Kevin has extensive experience in handling the defense of national and state class actions in state and federal courts. Kevin also provides clients with representation before governmental bodies and counsels them in regulatory matters. Kevin has served as personal counsel to several of the state’s constitutional officers. A 1981 graduate of Ouachita Baptist University and a 1984 graduate of the UA Little Rock School of Law, he previously served on the Board of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals Bar Association. He also previously served on the Federal Practice Committee for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, having been appointed by the judges in that district. He also currently serves on the Board of Visitors of the UA Little Rock, Chair of the War Memorial Stadium Commission, and past Chairman of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Special Advisor Chris Caldwell served as the Campaign Manager for the historic and successful Sarah for Governor campaign. He is the former federal Co-Chairman of the Delta Regional Authority. A Bryant native and graduate of the University of Arkansas, he worked for U.S. Senator John Boozman (Ark.) from 2010 to 2018 and managed his 2016 re-election campaign. Chris also served on former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s 2008 presidential bid and then-U.S. Senator Tim Hutchinson’s 2002 campaign.
Deputy Director Gretchen Conger joined the Sarah for Governor campaign as a Senior Advisor after serving as Deputy Chief of Staff to Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, where she was responsible for budget, policy, and legislative affairs. Prior to her 7-year tenure with Governor Ducey, Gretchen worked on multiple issue-based and candidate-based campaigns in Arizona.
Deputy Director Andrew "Vu" Ritchie, who most recently served as General Counsel to the Sarah for Governor campaign, brings years of legal, legislative, and political experience at both the national and state levels. Vu is a Little Rock native and graduate of the University of Arkansas Walton School of Business, and he received his Juris Doctorate from the William H. Bowen School of Law. Before joining the campaign, Vu worked for U.S. Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) as the Senior Advisor for Domestic Policy. During his time in Washington, D.C., Vu also served in the Trump Administration at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid as Senior Advisor in the Office of Administrator Seema Verma. Before moving to Washington D.C., Vu served as legal counsel and senior advisor to Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson. 
Communications Director Judd P. Deere who served in the same capacity on the Sarah for Governor campaign is a former White House Deputy Press Secretary for President Donald J. Trump and brings more than a decade of political communications experience at both the national and state levels. Before returning to Arkansas this summer, Judd served as Deputy Chief of Staff to U.S. Senator Bill Hagerty (Tenn.). He has also worked for U.S. Senators John Boozman (Ark.) and Mike Crapo (Idaho), as well as Arkansas Lt. Governor Tim Griffin and Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. Judd is a Benton native and graduate of Lyon College.
External Affairs Director Jordan Powell, who served as Deputy Campaign Manager for the Sarah for Governor campaign, is a campaign strategist who has served as a consultant, communications advisor, ad maker, and digital expert for gubernatorial, congressional, state house, and issue campaigns across the country. He has also served as a press secretary on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. In 2016, Jordan served as Deputy Campaign Manager for former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s presidential campaign.
Legislative Director Jamie Barker joins the transition team after serving as Political Director on the Sarah for Governor campaign. He was born and raised in Smackover and has worked on campaigns for U.S. Senator Tom Cotton (Ark.) and Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, as well as former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s 2016 presidential campaign. Jamie has also previously served as Political Director for the Republican Party of Arkansas. He is a past chairman of the Arkansas Federation of Young Republicans and past member of the state party’s executive committee. He is a political consultant with the Arkansas-based firm, JCD Consulting.
Policy Director Jack Sisson, who served as a Policy Advisor on the Sarah for Governor campaign, is a public affairs professional and consultant with more than 15 years of experience at the state and federal levels. In Washington, D.C., he served as health policy advisor to U.S. Senator John Boozman (Ark.) and aide to then-U.S. Senator Sam Brownback (Kas.). Jack also worked as an advisor to former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and as campaign manager for Representative French Hill (AR-02).
Boards & Commissions Director Alex Flemister joins the transition after serving as Director of Operations on the Sarah for Governor campaign. He has spent his career in both the public and private sectors. Before joining the campaign, Alex served as Associate Director for the White House Office of Public Liaison under President Donald J. Trump where he was the liaison for the business, veteran, and AAPI communities. Alex is a Little Rock native and a graduate of the University of Arkansas.

Sarah for Governor, November 10, 2022, Arkansas Governor-elect Announces Kevin Crass as Executive Director of the Transition[Press Release]