House bipartisan majority hires Walker press secretary - Must Read Alaska
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Monday, August 26, 2019
HomePoliticsHouse bipartisan majority hires Walker press secretary

House bipartisan majority hires Walker press secretary

Austin Baird, the former press secretary to Gov. Bill Walker, is the new press secretary for the Democrat-led, bipartisan House majority.

Baird is a former news reporter who signed onto the Walker Administration midstream and was in the unenviable position of trying to explain why Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott was resigning, without actually explaining it.

In response to candidate Alyse Galvin’s infamous and dramatic response to Congressman Don Young’s firm handshake, and a social media post from Amy Demboski criticizing Baird’s limp handshake, he posted the following response to Demboski:

Baird worked for KTUU as a political reporter covering the Legislature for several years. He left the station in December of 2017 to join the Walker Administration, where he earned $110,000 a year plus benefits, for a total compensation package of over $130,000 per year.

Walker’s former communications director, Grace Jang, had also worked as a reporter, but left immediately after Walker was elected to join his team. She has started her own consultancy, focusing on crisis communications.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Unbelievable. This zombie eyed guy could hardly piece sentences together on KTUU, it was comical. I had to turn the channel when he came on. I can imagine his limp-trout handshake too.

    Why does the house need a press secretary? Oh yeah, sorry, the dems will have him spin some tall tales covering for their incompetence.

    By the way, do they have a new chef making 6 figures in the cafeteria again this year?

  • Thanks for the shout-out, Suzanne. I’m excited to work for the new House Majority. Looking forward to giving you and Amy one of my famous handshakes when I get to Juneau!

    • EXPLAIN WHAT BYRON DID?

      • You know if he was a white male repub YOU would have been all over this demanding answers and mounting a high horse.

    • Austin……..WHAT DID BYRON MALLOTT do? Was he having sex with an underage girl who was neither his wife, nor his girlfriend?

  • Dangerous territory for Republicans. This is the problem with a bipartisan committee controlled by Democrats. Austin Baird is not only a partisan hack, he will serve as both a spy and a troublemaker for the Democrats in the Legislature.

  • Hey Austin: Do you need an assistant press secretary? I’m a conservative Republican, just what the House majority needs for BALANCE and TRUE BIPARTISANSHIP. Let’s do it.

  • Out the door with Austen….Dunleavy needs to give him the boot!!!

  • A press secretary? Really? What in the world for? And if you must, why this guy? If they “must” continue with the word “bipartisan” could they pretend to have a bipartisan press secretary? I find this young man incredibly unprofessional on the surface. I have not personally met him, so I must reserve most comments, but based on the things I have read and heard (his postings and words), he seems much more fit for an alternative gossip columnist that prefers a Sunday spread, striving for a journalistic breakthrough while nursing a hangover in a speedo.

  • He’s in there to appease the Democrats and stir up more sh*t. Since when did the State House need a press secretary? Never heard of that before. Complete waste of the state’s money, especially in the middle of a budget crises. The House Finance Committee should zero out that position. Tammie Wilson…..are you listening?

  • Getting a good look at you and your politics sir, I certainly can see you handing people a dead fish. I have never trusted people with limp handshakes. I would guess that our Governor Dunleavy and President Trump would present much firmer handshakes.