Kyla Shkerich Blair appointed Chief of Staff for Washington Commerce Director

Commerce Director Mike Fong names former Patty Murray aide to agency executive leadership post

OLYMPIA, WA — Washington State Department of Commerce Director Mike Fong today announced Kyla Shkerich Blair will join the agency as Chief of Staff. Shkerich Blair has over a decade of experience serving in city, state and federal government roles, where she spent much of her time listening and engaging with communities across the state. Prior to joining Commerce, she served as US Senator Patty Murray’s Deputy State Director where she oversaw the work of the office’s external team, ensuring the needs and concerns of Washingtonians were being heard and addressed by those working on important policy decisions in Washington DC.

Kyla Shkerich Blair headshot photo

Kyla Shkerich Blair

Prior to serving for Senator Murray, Shkerich Blair was Director of External Affairs for Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and worked for the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce where she led small business outreach and advocacy work. Early in her career, Shkerich Blair learned the ropes of state government while working for State Representative Mia Gregerson (33rd) through two Legislative sessions in Olympia.

“I’m delighted to welcome Kyla on board. Her experience working with a wide variety of constituents and communities throughout Washington is perfectly aligned with the department’s work and strategic priorities moving forward,” said Commerce Director Mike Fong. “She shares our commitment to strengthening communities and our focus on ensuring that the support Commerce provides is equitably distributed across the state.”

Shkerich Blair is a lifelong resident of Washington state, growing up in Issaquah and eventually moving to South King County. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in US History from University of Idaho.

“Commerce is doing amazing work and I’m honored to work alongside the team to make meaningful changes for the people and communities we serve,” said Shkerich Blair. “Listening and ensuring we are making the investments they need to thrive is critical. Together, we have opportunities to make long-lasting impact throughout the state.”

Shkerich Blair assumes the Chief of Staff role at Commerce on July 10, based in the department’s Olympia headquarters office.


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