Holcomb announces key Governor’s Workforce Cabinet changes

INDIANAPOLIS — Governor Eric J. Holcomb today announced Danny Lopez will leave his post as chairman of the Governor’s Workforce Cabinet. Commissioner of Higher Education Teresa Lubbers will serve as the interim chair and P.J. McGrew, the cabinet’s director of policy, will become the executive director.

“Developing a skilled and ready workforce demands the greatest focus and collaboration, and we’ve made great progress with Danny’s leadership and vision at the helm of the workforce cabinet,” Gov. Holcomb said. “During this transition, I appreciate Commissioner Lubbers and P.J’s willingness to serve the state in their new expanded roles.”

Lopez has accepted a position as senior vice president and chief of staff at Strada Education Network. Lopez led the cabinet’s effort to realign and better coordinate the efforts of the multiple state agencies that play a role in developing Indiana’s workforce. During his tenure, Lopez helped launch the state’s first career coaching and navigation program, supported doubling the state’s investment in the Next Level Jobs Employer Training Grants and Workforce Ready Grants, and worked to provide more flexibility to schools for career and technical education so more students can obtain credentials before graduating from high school.

Lubbers will continue her current responsibilities at the Commission for Higher Education, the coordinating agency charged with ensuring the state’s postsecondary education system is aligned to meet the needs of students and the state. Before joining the Commission a decade ago, Lubbers served in the Indiana State Senate for 17 years, leading on education and economic development issues as chair of the Senate Education and Career Development Committee.

Before serving as the cabinet’s policy director, McGrew was the education policy director for  Gov. Holcomb. In addition to his work in the governor’s office, McGrew served as the associate policy director for the Indiana Education Roundtable, director of special projects for the Department of Workforce Development and chief of staff for the State Board of Education. McGrew also spent nearly 10 years teaching high school math in Idaho and Indiana. 

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