West Virginia Week in Review - July 22, 2023

7/22/2023

West Virginia Week in Review
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Gov. Justice thanks Secretary Jeff Sandy for his service after announcing retirement; appoints Mark Sorsaia as Secretary of Dept. of Homeland Security
Gov. Jim Justice announced the retirement of West Virginia Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeff Sandy, effective July 31, 2023.

"Jeff Sandy has done an amazing job as Secretary of Homeland Security," Gov. Justice said. "He's an honorable man who's helped my administration in countless ways, and we will greatly miss his tireless work. I can never thank him enough for his service these past seven years and I wish him the absolute best in his retirement."

Gov. Justice presented Sandy with a Distinguished West Virginian Award to commemorate his service.
Gov. Justice also announced that he has appointed Mark Sorsaia as Secretary of the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security, effective August 1, 2023.

"Mark is incredibly qualified to take the helm of this important agency, and I look forward to working closely with him," Gov. Justice said.
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Gov. Justice thanks CIO Josh Spence for his service; announces appointment of Heather Abbott as State’s Chief Information Officer
Gov. Justice announced that the current West Virginia State Chief Information Officer, Josh Spence, will transition to a role in the private sector, effective July 28, 2023.

"Please join me in wishing Josh all the best in the next chapter of his career," Gov. Justice said. "Josh is a superstar who's not only served as our state CIO but also actively serves in the WV Air National Guard as a cyber operations officer. He's done incredible work as our first appointed state CIO leading the Office of Technology and modernizing our state's technology, and I know that he will continue to do incredible work wherever his career takes him."

Gov. Justice also announced the appointment of Heather Abbott as Chief Information Officer, effective July 29, 2023.

"I'm proud to appoint Heather to this role, and I am confident she will do a wonderful job," Gov. Justice added. "I hope everyone will join me in welcoming her to this role later this month."
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Gov. Justice, First Lady welcome visitors to National Boy Scout Jamboree at Summit Bechtel Reserve in Fayette County
The 2023 National Boy Scouts Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in Fayette County has brought together over 15,000 scouts from various parts of the United States and around the world for a nine-day gathering.

The event has representation from every state in the U.S. and attendees from several countries, including Austria, Canada, Egypt, Ghana, Great Britain, Iceland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Trinidad, and Tobago.
The West Virginia National Guard is playing a key role in providing military and interagency support, with more than 500 service members assisting in logistics, transportation, security, medical services, communications, and public affairs.
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Gov. Justice approves funds for Jefferson County Day Report Center after lightning causes devastating fire
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Gov. Justice congratulates West Virginia angler after record-breaking catch

An 11-year record for the longest longnose gar caught in West Virginia has been broken. Rich Chapman of Ashton reeled in the record-breaking fish, which measured 53.62 inches, on the Ohio River in Mason County. 

Chapman’s fish exceeded the previous longnose gar length record of 52.25 inches, which was set by Mark Foster in 2012 on the Ohio River. However, it did not break the longstanding weight record of 19.08 pounds, which was set by Michael Casey 30 years ago on the Kanawha River.

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Gov. Justice welcomes Wahama and John Marshall softball teams following state championship victories
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Contact Information

Jordan Damron, jordan.l.damron@wv.gov; CJ Harvey, cj.harvey@wv.gov

Contact

Office of the Governor
State Capitol, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E
Charleston, WV 25305

Office Phone:
304.558.2000 or 1.888.438.2731

Governor's Mansion:
304.558.3588

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