by Max Brantley
The expected shakeup at Arkansas Democratic Party HQ following the election of a new chairman, Will Bond, was announced today.
Mariah Hatta is departing as executive director. Amanda Nixon White, a former district director for U.S. Rep. Vic Snyder, is in. Candace Martin, who has worked for Gov. Mike Beebe and the Chad Causey congressional campaign, will be communications director.
Hatta is too stay on for an unspecified transition period as a "senior advisor."
The Democratic Party of Arkansas announced two new team members today, welcoming Amanda Nixon White of Little Rock as executive director and Candace Martin of Jonesboro as communications director.
"The DPA is committed to continue providing the strong leadership that has elected Arkansas Democrats throughout the years," Chairman Will Bond said. "Both Amanda and Candace will bring valuable experience as we look towards the future and work to provide the tradition of Arkansas Democrats offering responsible leadership that puts people before politics. I want to particularly thank Mariah Hatta for the leadership she has provided as executive director over the last several years. Dedicated Democrats like her make our party stronger, and we look forward to working with her during this transition."
Amanda Nixon White, who has 25 years of experience as a governmental administrator and practicing attorney, has spent the past ten years as District Director for Congressman Vic Snyder in the Second Congressional District of Arkansas. Before joining Congressman Snyder's staff, White worked as an attorney in both public and private practice, and served as the executive director of the Arkansas Ethics Commission from 1994 to 1997.
Candace Martin began her political career working on Governor Mike Beebe's first gubernatorial campaign as press secretary and went on to become deputy spokesperson in the Governor's Office. She most recently served as the deputy campaign director for Chad Causey for Congress.
Both White and Martin will work with Mariah Hatta, who will continue in a senior advisory role, during the transition period.
"I want to thank Governor Beebe and the three inspirational chairmen (Bill Gwatney, David Pryor, and Todd Turner) who gave me this incredible opportunity," Hatta said. "These three plus years have been both the most challenging and rewarding I have had in my 19 years in politics. I look forward to working with Chairman Bond, Amanda, and Candace to insure a smooth transition and plan to continue to work with all of the dedicated Arkansas Democrats who toil behind the scenes to elect the best officials in our state."
The Democratic Party of Arkansas elected new leadership, including Chairman Will Bond, at the State Committee Meeting held in Hot Springs on February 12, 2011.