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Evers names VA Secretary, budget director, DFI Secretary

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Governor elect Tony Evers named three more appointments to his state agency Friday.

Evers says it's important that his cabinet members can work outside their own agency.

"These three folks really fit that to a T," Evers said. "Making sure that they will be there to help us solve problems. Whether it's around corrections, or whether it's around education, or other issues."

Evers tabbed Dane County Supervisor Mary Kolar as Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Kolar is a former naval captain who served on active duty for 28 years. She plans to improve communication with state veterans

"To ensure that they, and their families receive the benefits that they have earned," Kolar said.

Kathy Blumenfeld will lead the Department of Financial Institutions, which manages banks. Blumenfeld is currently VP of operations for a Madison company that manages employee benefits.

"We will continue to focus on improving the financial literacy of our citizens, while supporting the charitable organizations that serve our most vulnerable," Blumenfeld said.

Evers named assistant state Superintendent Brian Pahnke as budget director. All three appointments were from the Madison area.

Republicans have criticized Evers for drawing heavily from Madison and Milwaukee.

"They are two areas that have a lot of people living there, so i don't think our selections are extraordinarily surprising," Evers said.

Evers still has several cabinet positions to fill. All of his appointees will need to be confirmed by the state senate, which will have a 19-14 GOP majority.

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