Bill Walker, the former state senator who moved between Democratic and Republican administrations as his needs demanded, will NOT be a part of the Asa Hutchinson administration.
In a memo to employees, Walker said Hutchinson informed him he’d be making a change in leadership of the Arkansas Department of Career Education, which Walker led.
Walker got on the Beebe payroll in 2007 after campaigning for him in 2006. A Democrat, his support for Republican Gov. Mike Huckabee got him a paying job as member of the Parole Board.
His time at Career Education was marked by some controversy, including reporting by us on real estate deals the agency did with his friend Richard Mays and for expenditures on his executive offices. A scathing audit of the Rehabilitation Services Division also led to a demotion of director Robert Trevino. Walker frequently mentioned his friendship with Huckabee, a factor that some thought might mean a spot for Walker in the Hutchinson administration. Huckabee ties are not necessarily a golden pass for the Hutchinson team.
Here’s Walker’s memo:
Eight years ago, I was given the privilege and honor to be appointed as the Director of the Arkansas Department of Career Education. During this time, I developed a passion, respect and love for the work, and the team that we have assembled to serve Arkansans many of whom had been underserved and vulnerable.
The work that we have done during those eight years, has been both a calling and nothing short of incredible. As I have said on many occasions, people must be better off because we served. For that, I will always be grateful for this incredible journey.
As we approach the close of the Beebe administration, I have had a conversation with our Governor-elect Asa Hutchinson and he has informed me that he intends to make a change in the leadership of the Arkansas Department of Career Education.
During the transition, I have pledged my absolute support and cooperation with this new administration and the future Director and I respectfully ask for yours as well.
Additionally, I ask for your prayers for our Agency as we transition into a new administration.
The scripture says “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven”.
Accordingly, I am proud of the many accomplishments that we have achieved together. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve with each and every one of you in this season and for that I will never forget you.
May God continue to bless each and every one of you and may God bless our new Governor and his new administration as they undertake the awesome task of serving the people of Arkansas.