Seeking to move forward from a scandal involving his last permanent chief of staff, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan named Amelia Chassé Alcivar as his new chief of staff Tuesday.
Chassé Alcivar fills a position that became vacant in August when Roy McGrath resigned following The Baltimore Sun’s report that he negotiated a six-figure payout when he left the Maryland Environmental Service to head Hogan’s staff.
McGrath lasted just 11 weeks in the job. The Sun later reported that the environmental service reimbursed McGrath more than $55,000 for extensive travel, meals and other expenses after he left the independent state agency. One of McGrath’s employees, Matthew Sherring, was reimbursed more than $14,000 after paying for an online training course McGrath took from Harvard University.
A General Assembly committee is investigating McGrath and the environmental service, and lawmakers are taking the rare step of issuing subpoenas to McGrath and Sherring to get them to testify.
Chassé Alcivar is returning to the Republican governor’s team. She was Hogan’s communications director from 2018 to 2019 and deputy communications director from 2016 to 2018. Chassé Alcivar left the administration last year to work for the Republican Governors Association.
“Amelia brings to the table a deep knowledge of our administration’s priorities and a management record of results that will be invaluable as we continue working to change Maryland for the better,” Hogan said in a statement.
Chassé Alcivar, in a statement issued by the governor’s office, said she’s “deeply honored” to rejoin Hogan’s team.
“Now it’s time to roll up our sleeves and get to work to support the governor’s bipartisan record of protecting the health and safety of our families and our schools, strengthening our economy and delivering for Marylanders," she said.
Chassé Alcivar previously was a press secretary for Republican Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas. She also worked for the conservative America Rising PAC, for private firms and on the 2008 presidential campaign of late U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona.
Doug Mayer, who brought Chassé Alcivar onto the Hogan team when he was its communications director, said that beyond her communications skills, she has the knowledge of policy and strategy necessary to thrive in the chief of staff position.
Maryland Policy & Politics Newsletter
Keep up to date with Maryland politics, elections and important decisions made by federal, state and local government officials.
“She’s a really talented and dedicated public servant and somebody who will bring a very calm and professional focus to the role,” said Mayer, who now works as a Republican strategist. “There’s a lot to accomplish over the next two years.”
Hogan’s second, four-year term ends in January 2023. State law limits Maryland governors to two terms.
Following McGrath’s departure, Hogan tapped longtime aide Keiffer J. Mitchell Jr. to serve as acting chief of staff. With Chassé Alcivar’s hiring, Mitchell moves back to his previous position as the governor’s chief lobbyist while picking up an additional title of “senior counselor to the governor.”