U.S. Sen. John Hickenlooper, a Colorado Democrat, on Friday announced a slew of hires for his offices in Washington and Colorado, including Capitol Hill veterans, former campaign staffers and former aides to Colorado's senior senator, Democrat Michael Bennet, and Hickenlooper's predecessor, Republican Cory Gardner.
Hickenlooper also said he will maintain the regional offices Gardner operated in Denver, Colorado Springs, Durango, Fort Collins, Grand Junction and Greeley, with plans to open an office in Pueblo. The lawmaker also plans to operate a mobile office to serve the Eastern Plains.
“As a United States senator, listening to constituents is my first priority," Hickenlooper said in a written statement. "To do that, we’re building the nation’s best outreach and constituent services operation to reach Coloradans in every corner of the state."
Added Hickenlooper: “These are turbulent times, and families and small businesses across the state are looking to Washington for action. If you have an issue with a federal agency, a suggestion for legislation, a question for me, or simply want to say hi — give us a shout!”
Kirtan Mehta, who has worked for U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, is Hickenlooper's chief of staff.
The senator's state director is Shad Murib, a former chief of staff to the Colorado Senate Democrats and government affairs manager for Colorado Secretary of Sate Jena Griswold. Murib also worked on Gov. Jared Polis' gubernatorial campaign and in Polis' congressional office before that. He's married to state Sen. Kerry Donovan, D-Vail.
Kaaren Hinck is one of Hickenlooper's senior advisers, a job she most recently had with U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. She's also worked for then-U.S. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts and U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.
Kristin Lynch, a senior adviser, most recently ran the communications shop for U.S. Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and handled communications for Hillary Clinton's 2016 Colorado campaign. She's also been a press aide to Bennet, former U.S. Sen. Mark Udall and Polis, when he was in Congress.
Kate Cassling, the legislative director, has held policy roles for Manchin, U.S. Rep. Dina Titus and U.S. Sen. Susan Collins of Maine. Most recently, she worked on health care policy at the Bipartisan Policy Center Action.
Alyssa Roberts, a communications adviser for Hickenlooper's Senate campaign, will be communications director for his Senate office. She has held communications and press aide jobs for the Colorado Democratic Party, Bennet, Udall and the League of Conservation Voters, where she was national press secretary.
Hickenlooper's constituent affairs director is Jordan Wells, a former senior staffer for U.S. Sen. Gary Peters of Michigan.
Sarah McCarthy is Western regional director and Kari Linker is Eastern regional director. McCarthy, a Western Slope native, has worked at Conservation Colorado and the Colorado Outdoor Business Alliance. Born and raised in northeast Colorado, Linker was most recently director of development at Morgan Community College and worked on launching the Colorado Blueprint Economic Development strategy at the Colorado Office of Economic Development when Hickenlooper was governor.
Erika Cabrera, Nannette Byrne-Haupt and Johnnie Nguyen are constituent advocates, a position Byrne-Haupt held with Gardner.
Rayhaan Merani, who handled scheduling for Hickenlooper's campaign, is the senator's scheduler, and Mischa Smith is in charge of state scheduling.
Andrew Jorgenson, digital director, was on the Hickenlooper campaign's digital team and performed the same job for Peters and former U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly of Indiana.
Camilla Vogt is a legislative assistant, Conor Frickel is technology adviser, John Conrad is in charge of correspondence. Staff assistants include Quinn Egan, Julia Barry and Nora Simon.