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Shuster Shuffles Staff

After two-and-a-half years, Rep. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) bids farewell to his legislative director, Joel Brubaker, who won’t have to travel far — or even outside of the Longworth House Office Building — to become the new chief of staff for Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va.). Brubaker’s departure has prompted a shuffling of Shuster’s legislative team, and four of his staff members were recently awarded promotions.

Michelle Hennessey becomes the new legislative director after three years of service to Shuster. Formerly a legislative assistant, Hennessey specialized in the areas of health care and Social Security. As legislative director, her policy role expands to cover budget matters and the workings of the Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on economic development, public buildings and emergency management, which is chaired by her boss. Before coming to Capitol Hill, Hennessey worked at a public health department in Illinois. Originally from the Washington, D.C., area, she is a graduate of the University of Illinois.

Brubaker, of Lancaster, Pa., graduated from Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania. As legislative director, he advised the Congressman on all policy matters and also handled his committee assignments, including the Armed Services Committee and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Active in Republican and Pennsylvania politics throughout his career, Brubaker has also served as the executive director for a County Republican Committee in Pennsylvania and as the campaign director of one of the state’s former U.S. Representatives, Robert Walker (R).

Earning promotions along with Hennessey are Elizabeth Carter, Chris Gindlesperger and Maribeth Collins. Carter hails from McLean, Va., and graduated from Mount Saint Mary’s College in Maryland. She rises to the position of senior legislative assistant, where she will advise Shuster on highway, transportation and education issues. Carter has worked in Shuster’s office since the Congressman was first elected in May 2001.

Gindlesperger, previously a legislative correspondent, will now serve as a legislative assistant, handling telecommunications, technology and financial services policy for the office. He hails from Chambersburg, Pa. — located in Shuster’s district — and graduated from Penn State University in 2003.

Another Nittany Lion, Collins, moves up to staff assistant. She earned her political science degree from Penn State in 2002, and has previously worked for the National Federation of Independent Business in its federal policy office. Collins hails from Hellertown, Pa.

Shuster also announced the hiring of a new chief of staff, Jeff Loveng, to replace the White House-bound Alex Mistri. A graduate of the University of Idaho, Loveng has served for several years in Congressional offices, including stints with then-Congressman and current Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), former Sen. Dirk Kempthorne (R-Idaho), and former Rep. Ron Packard (R-Calif.) Prior to returning to the Hill, Loveng worked for several years in management in the energy industry.

“Jeff is a great selection for so many reasons,” Shuster said in a statement. “He brings legislative experience, management skills and wide-ranging knowledge of the federal government. I look forward to working with him because I know he is a great fit for central and western Pennsylvania.”

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