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Hoeven chooses Senate staff

Senator-elect John Hoeven will bring several familiar faces on board to manage his offices in North Dakota and Washington next year.

The Republican announced Wednesday his key Senate staff members, each of whom has a history of work with Hoeven -- either on his campaign team or in the governor's office.

Don Larson, Hoeven's campaign manager and now leader of his transition team, will serve as his Senate chief of staff.

Don Canton, who has served as spokesman of the governor's office for eight years, will be Hoeven's communications director.

Tessa Sandstrom, who led new media and research for the campaign, will assist Canton.

Hoeven also will be tapping many state-level officials to manage his offices in North Dakota.

Current Chief of Staff Ron Rauschenberger will become Hoeven's state director after the next legislative session to first ensure a smooth transition for Gov.-designate Jack Dalrymple.

In the interim, North Dakota Commerce Department Director Shane Goettle will serve as Hoeven's state director. He'll transition into another role on Hoeven's Senate staff once Rauschenberger assumes his position.

Deputy Commerce Commissioner Paul Govig will serve as interim Commerce commissioner until Dalrymple appoints someone to the position.

Dalrymple, the state's lieutenant governor, will become governor when Hoeven resigns Dec. 7.

Eileen Wehri will continue to serve as Hoeven's administrative assistant and scheduler in his Bismarck Senate office, and Monty Rauser will continue working with constituent services in Hoeven's Fargo office.

Goettle said he told his staff Wednesday morning that he would step down. He will continue in his Commerce position for most of December to help with the transition.

In early January, he expects to begin his new job, which will focus on constituent services and "good solid communication between Washington and the state, as well as with the public here in North Dakota."

Goettle has served as the state's Commerce commissioner since November 2005.

Compiled by the staff at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, which is owned by Forum Communications Co.