Topeka – Kansas Governor Sam Brownback today announced the appointment of the office's new Director of Communications/Press Secretary, Eileen Hawley. She will join the administration staff on June 24, 2013.
"Eileen's experience and passion for excellence will make her a great fit for the administration," Governor Brownback said. "Lt. Governor Colyer and I are excited to welcome her to our team."
Hawley is a professional communicator with more than 25 years of corporate and government public affairs experience. Most recently she served as Vice President Operations of the Lawrence Kansas Chamber of Commerce. Before moving to Kansas in 2008, she led communications and outreach efforts for NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
As the "voice of Mission Control" for more than 40 Space Shuttle and Space Station missions, Hawley led the Johnson Space Center (JSC) communications efforts following the loss of the Space Shuttle Columbia and subsequent return to flight. As JSC's Director of External Relations, she developed and led the center's media relations, government affairs, education outreach and internal communications programs. She served as an advisor to senior NASA leadership and received NASA's Outstanding Leadership Medal in May 2008.
"I look forward to joining the administration and supporting the priorities of Governor Brownback and Lt. Governor Colyer," Hawley said. "This is an opportunity for me to use my skills and experience to serve the citizens of Kansas and I am truly honored to have been selected for this position."
She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in media studies from the University of Houston, Clear Lake and holds a master's degree in strategic communication and leadership from Seton Hall University. Hawley and her husband, Kansas native and Shuttle astronaut Steve Hawley, live in Lawrence.
Hawley replaces Sherriene Jones-Sontag who has been appointed Deputy Director of the Kansas Lottery.