Search For State Commerce Secretary Continues

Interviews are underway as Gov. Sam Brownback’s administration searches for a new commerce secretary.

Brownback spokeswoman Eileen Hawley said the administration doesn’t have a time frame for announcing a nominee. She also didn’t disclose how many potential candidates have been interviewed so far.

The Department of Commerce has been without a permanent chief since former Secretary Pat George resigned in July to accept a job to become president and CEO of a nonprofit alcohol and substance abuse treatment center based in Norton.

Brownback initially nominated Leawood businessman George Hansen for the post. However, he withdrew on the eve of his confirmation hearing before a Senate committee, citing potential conflicts of interest because a relative has had extensive business dealings with the Commerce Department.