The former executive director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee will step in as Gov. Steve Bullock’s new chief of staff this August, the governor announced on Thursday.
Tom Lopach, who also served as chief of staff to U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, will replace Tracy Stone-Manning at the helm of the governor’s cabinet. She is returning to Missoula to serve as associate vice president for the National Wildlife Federation.
“She’s leaving the position in the capable hands of Tom Lopach, whose extensive experience in public service and government will ensure this administration continues to focus on growing the economy, creating jobs, and providing essential services Montanans and businesses depend on,” Bullock said.
Lopach, a Helena native, has served as a strategist for Subject Matter, an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C.. He also served as executive director of the DSCC during the 2016 election cycle and chief of staff to Tester from 2010 to 2014.
In 2009, Lopach was senior vice president of congressional affairs for the Export-Import Bank of the United States. During the 2008 election cycle, he also served as the DSCC’s national finance director.
Lopach started his career as a field representative for former U.S. Rep. Pat Williams in 1996.
“I have known and admired Steve and his wife Lisa since long before they entered public service,” Lopach said, adding that Lisa Bullock was one of his childhood coaches.
“From early childhood education to Medicaid expansion, from creating jobs in the outdoor and high- tech economy while protecting our clean air and water and public lands, Steve is getting things done for folks in Montana, and I’m honored to help him continue his work.”
Lopach will join the governor’s staff with Ali Bovingdon, who serves as deputy chief of staff and director of the Office of the Governor. Bovingdon, a Chinook native, has served with Bullock since he was elected Attorney General.
Stone-Manning will head the National Wildlife Federation’s work in public lands.
“It has been a remarkable privilege to work for Governor Bullock, his team and the citizens of Montana,” she said. “I leave behind friends for life and look forward to the work I know they will accomplish.
Bullock, who was first elected governor in 2012, is now in his final term.