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Lombardo announces new chief of staff, replacing former state senator Kieckhefer

The transition from Lombardo Chief of Staff Ben Kieckhefer to Ryan Cherry will take place in early 2024. Cherry’s first day in office will be Jan. 17.
Tabitha Mueller
Tabitha Mueller
State Government

Gov. Joe Lombardo announced Wednesday that Ryan Cherry, previously an aide to former Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV), would become his new chief of staff in 2024.

The announcement said the transition from Chief of Staff Ben Kieckhefer, a former state senator, to Cherry will take place in early 2024, and Cherry’s first day in office will be Jan. 17. 

Kieckhefer has held the top-ranking post on the governor’s staff since shortly after Lombardo was elected just over a year ago. He previously spent almost three terms in the state Senate, served a brief stint on the Nevada Gaming Commission, and worked as communications director for former Gov. Jim Gibbons.

Cherry served for almost three years as the chief of staff to Lt. Gov. Mark Hutchison and spent six years as Heller’s rural director. 

“My office and state government are in great shape heading into the next phase of the administration, and I’m grateful for all of Ben’s efforts to make that happen,” Lombardo said in a press release.

In response to a text message requesting additional details about the transition and what he would do next, Kieckhefer said he had nothing to add to the announcement.


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