Barr hires veteran GOP congressional aide Betsy Hawkings as chief of staff

12/10/2012 09:26 AM

LEXINGTON — Republican Congressman-elect Andy Barr has named as his top aide Betsy Wright Hawkings, who has worked for three GOP House members over more than 20 years.

Barr made the announcement Monday morning while speaking to the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce in Lexington.

Hawkings previously worked for U.S. Rep. Bobby Schilling of Illinois, who lost re-election this fall partially because of Illinois’ redistricting made it more difficult for Republicans.

Before that, Hawkings worked for U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Ohio, who represents the Dayton area. And she spent about 20 years with former Connecticut Congressman Chris Shays, who lost re-election in 2008.

Hawkings told Pure Politics she does have ties to Kentucky. Her mother’s family has roots in Harrison and Perry counties.

Barr said Hawkings is his only hire so far, and she will help him hire a district director and legislative director next.

About Ryan Alessi

Ryan Alessi joined cn|2 in May 2010 as senior managing editor and host of Pure Politics. He has covered politics for more than 10 years, including 7 years as a reporter for the Lexington Herald-Leader. Follow Ryan on Twitter @cn2Alessi. Ryan can be reached at 502-792-1135 or

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