SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the following appointments:
Colleen Bell, 52, of Los Angeles, has been appointed director of the California Film Commission. Bell has worked as a consultant since 2017. She was the U.S. ambassador to Hungary from 2014 to 2017. She held several positions at Bell-Phillip Television Productions, including producer from 2012 to 2014, director of special projects from 2006 to 2012 and associate producer and script supervisor from 1991 to 2003. She is a member of the board of advisors for the Georgetown University Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, the Council of American Ambassadors and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and of the board of directors for the Pacific Council on International Policy. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $170,004. Bell is a Democrat.
Christina Morkner Brown, 51, of Fair Oaks, has been appointed deputy secretary for law enforcement and general counsel at the California Environmental Protection Agency. Morkner Brown has been a deputy attorney general at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General since 2017. She held multiple positions at the California Air Resources Board, including senior staff attorney from 2016 to 2017, assistant chief counsel from 2014 to 2016 and staff attorney from 2008 to 2014. Morkner Brown was a litigation associate at Kenyon Yeates from 2008 to 2010. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $182,400. Morkner Brown is a Democrat.
Elissa Konove, 45, of South Pasadena, has been appointed undersecretary at the California State Transportation Agency. Konove has served as deputy chief executive officer at the Southern California Regional Rail Authority since 2015. She held several positons at the Federal Highway Administration from 2006 to 2015, including chief financial officer, acting director of field services south and director in the Office of Budget. Konove was a transportation program examiner and budget preparation specialist at the Office of Management and Budget in the Executive Office of the President of the United States from 2001 to 2006. She earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Southern California. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $185,004. Konove is a Democrat.
Christine Inouye, 53, of Sacramento, has been appointed director of engineering for the California High Speed Rail Authority. Inouye has served as undersecretary at the California State Transportation Agency since 2017. She has served as capital contracts procurement manager at the California High Speed Rail Authority since 2016. She was a project manager at the California State Transportation Agency from 2014 to 2016. Inouye served in several positions at the California Department of Transportation from 1989 to 2014, including high-speed rail coordinator, management liaison to the chief engineer, project manager and supervising transportation engineer. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $178,884. Inouye is a Republican.
Jennifer Neill, 48, of Sacramento, has been appointed assistant secretary for legal affairs and chief counsel at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. She has been chief counsel at the Board of Parole Hearings since 2016. Neill served as a senior assistant attorney general at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General from 2012 to 2016, where she was a supervising deputy attorney general in the Correctional Writs and Appeals Section from 2006 to 2012 and in the Correctional Law Section from 2003 to 2006, and served as a deputy attorney general from 1998 to 2003. She was a special education hearing officer and associate staff attorney at the Institute for Administrative Justice from 1997 to 1998. Neill earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $194,760. Neill is a Democrat.