By John Valentine
President of the Utah Senate
announced her retirement yesterday after 30 years of service to the Utah House of Representatives. Many of us began our legislative careers in the House, and had the good fortune to work with Carole while we were there.
In 1988 I was a freshman state representative. Carole took me under her wing and showed me the ropes. She is bright, funny, has an excellent memory, and knows parliamentary procedure like the back of her hand. She is a good counselor and confidante. She holds a deep respect for the legislature as an institution; we will all miss her memory and expertise.
As the Utah House remodels their staff organization, people invariably ask me if the Senate will move toward a similar structure. The short answer is no.
The Senate Office has six year-round staffers. Four of the six are non-partisan, including the Secretary of the Senate. In addition, the majority and minority leadership teams each have one staff person assigned to them.
I am satisfied with both the structure and personnel in our office. I like the natural balance of our partisan / non-partisan mix. Our staff do excellent work, are substantially cross-trained, and interact effectively. I sincerely appreciate the dynamic of a winning team that knows their positions and plays together well.
Best of luck to the House as they search for the right person to replace Carole Peterson.