Today, Governor Chris Christie announced changes in his senior staff leadership, moving long-time confidants and advisors to other leadership roles to help him carry out his reform agenda for New Jersey. 

Among the moves is the elevation of Deputy Chief Counsel Kevin O’Dowd to Chief of Staff, replacing Rich Bagger, who is returning to the biopharmaceutical sector as Senior Vice President for Corporate Affairs and Strategic Market Access for Celgene Corporation. Charlie McKenna, currently director of Homeland Security and Preparedness and a former top advisor to the Governor at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, will become Governor Christie’s Chief Counsel taking the position left vacant after the Governor nominated Jeff Chiesa to be State Attorney General. Christie hopes to name McKenna’s replacement before his January 10th State of the State Address.

“I am extremely proud of all we accomplished in two years with my cabinet and senior staff, led by Rich Bagger and Jeff Chiesa,” says Christie. “Every one of my senior staff gave something up to join me and devote themselves to the single-minded cause of starting New Jersey's comeback in terms of fiscal responsibility, smaller and smarter government and business retention, expansion and job growth. I thank them, those who are leaving and those who are staying in the same or new roles, and commend them for their service to this noble cause on behalf of our state and its citizens and taxpayers.