Ivey appoints Bonner as senior adviser, Butler finance director
Governor Kay Ivey on Friday announced two key appointments to her administration as she transitions to a full term of her own.
Former Congressman Jo Bonner was named as Ivey’s senior adviser and acting Finance Director Kelly Butler’s position was made permanent.
“These two outstanding public servants are great additions to my administration and will work hard for the people of Alabama,” Ivey said in a press release.
She continued, “Jo will bring a wealth of knowledge on a variety of topics to the office, and I look forward to getting his input as we move into a full term. Kelly’s experience with our state’s budgets and as a fiscal analyst makes him an unmatched candidate for Finance Director, his dedication and skill will be invaluable as we build Alabama’s budgets over the next four years. I appreciate both of them for agreeing to serve my administration and the people of Alabama.”
For the past year, Bonner served as Interim Executive Director for the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority and prior to that as Vice Chancellor for Economic Development for The University of Alabama System since 2013.
For over a decade, Bonner represented Alabama’s First District in the U.S. House of Representatives, being elected to six terms. In Congress, Bonner earned a reputation as a respected and influential voice of reason in both Alabama and Washington, D.C. He was a member of the House Appropriations Committee, where he served on three key subcommittees, as well as the House Ethics Committee. Widely respected on both sides of the aisle, Bonner was selected by House Speaker John Boehner to serve as chairman of Ethics during the 112th Congress.
Prior to Bonner’s distinguished service in Congress, he served as then-Congressman Sonny Callahan’s chief of staff from 1989-2002. Bonner, like Ivey, is a native of Camden. He is a graduate of the University of Alabama.
“One of my greatest passions is serving the people of Alabama, and I am honored to once again have the opportunity to do so,” Bonner remarked. “I appreciate Governor Ivey for asking me to serve as part of her administration and for her confidence in me. I look forward to working with my long-time friend to better Alabama for generations to come.”
Since August, Butler has served as acting director of the Alabama Department of Finance. Butler has more than two decades of experience working with the state’s budgets and more than three decades experience as a fiscal analyst with the state. Prior to being named acting finance director, Butler served as assistant finance director for Fiscal Operations and State Budget officer.
“It is a true honor to serve the people of Alabama and to be asked to lead the Alabama Department of Finance on a permanent basis,” Butler outlined. “We have made a lot of progress over the past three months, and I look forward to continue working on that progress and improving the services provided by the Department of Finance over the next four years.”
Both appointments are effective Saturday, December 1.
Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn