Hogan Taps Kelly Schulz to Lead Department of Commerce

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Kelly M. Schulz Secretary, Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (photo courtesy of DLLR)

Governor Larry Hogan today announced the appointment of Kelly M. Schulz as secretary of the Maryland Department of Commerce. Schulz currently serves as secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR).

Secretary Schulz, whose nomination is subject to Senate confirmation, will replace Secretary R. Michael Gill, who will return to the private sector after leading Commerce —formerly the Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED) — since Hogan took office in 2015. James E. Rzepkowski will serve as acting secretary at DLLR, where he currently serves as assistant secretary for the Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning.

According to a press release:

‘Secretary Schulz is a strong advocate for Maryland’s job creators, and has a proven track record of working directly with our business community to create jobs, enhance economic growth, and expand opportunity for both businesses and workers,” said Governor Hogan. “I know that Kelly will be instrumental in ensuring that we build on our incredible progress.’

In her role at DLLR, Secretary Schulz is responsible for managing an agency with nearly 2,000 employees and an operating budget of more than $375 million. Schulz has been working successfully in that capacity since the beginning of the Hogan administration, and has received wide praise for initiatives to grow the state’s workforce and support Maryland’s small businesses.

Secretary Schulz will replace Secretary R. Michael Gill, who has led Commerce, formerly the Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED), since Governor Hogan took office. Secretary Gill plans to return to the private sector as chairman of Columbia-based Evergreen Advisors, the role he had before joining the Hogan administration in 2015.

“I want to thank Mike Gill for his distinguished service. Under his leadership, Commerce has played a pivotal role in transforming Maryland’s economy, and we owe him a debt of gratitude,” said Governor Hogan. “From implementing our More Jobs for Marylanders program to spearheading successful international trade missions, Secretary Gill has been instrumental in our work to change Maryland for the better.”

“When the governor first offered me this opportunity, we talked about the focus of his campaign – Change Maryland – and we did that,” said Secretary Gill. “The last four years have been the most exciting and rewarding four years that anyone could have. We have an unbelievable team of people at Commerce, incredible assets in the state, and a business-friendly culture under Governor Hogan’s leadership. Kelly and I have developed a great relationship serving together in the cabinet, and she will be outstanding in this new role.”

Additionally, James E. Rzepkowski has been named acting secretary at DLLR, where he currently serves as assistant secretary for the Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning. Rzepkowski previously served as Director of Workforce Development at Constellation Energy Nuclear Group, LLC, as an assistant secretary within Maryland’s Department of Business and Economic Development, and spent nine years representing the 32nd legislative district in Anne Arundel County in the Maryland House of Delegates.

Read the full press release for more information.

Learn how the economy influences Maryland commerce at The MACo Winter Conference, which will feature a 2019 Economic Forecast by Anirban Basu, Chairman & CEO, Sage Policy Group. This session will provide a detailed outlook for global, national, and regional economies

The MACo Winter Conference will be held January 2-4, 2019 at the Hyatt in Cambridge, Maryland. This year’s theme is, “Charting the Course.”

Learn more about MACo’s Winter Conference:

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