Jindal appoints Rainwater to top staff post - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Jindal appoints Rainwater to top staff post


DeQuincy native Paul Rainwater has been named Gov. Bobby Jindal's new chief-of-staff, according to a news release from the governor's office.

Kristy Nichols, who has been serving as Jindal's deputy chief-of-staff, will step up in Rainwater's former role as commission of administration.

Rainwater replaces Stephen Waguespack, who is resigning to pursue opportunities in the private sector, the release states.

The changes become effective on Oct. 15.

"I am excited for Paul to take on this new role. Paul has never shied away from a challenge. Indeed, he has taken on some of the toughest jobs in state government, including confronting our recent budget challenges. Paul has played a critical role in helping us right-size state government while protecting critical services for our people. I know he will continue to do a great job for the people of Louisiana in his new position," Jindal said.

According to the release, Rainwater served as executive director of the Louisiana Recovery Authority. Previously, he served as legislative director and chief of operations for U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu. From June 2006 to January 2007, he served as director of hazard mitigation and intergovernmental affairs at the LRA, where he managed program policies, served as team leader and coordinated with state and federal agencies to set mitigation priorities. 

From July 2000 to June 2006, Rainwater served as the Chief Administrative Officer for the city of Lake Charles.

Rainwater also formerly served as manager of governmental affairs for Conoco Inc., Gulf Coast Business Unit in Baton Rouge from 1998 to July 2000; as manager of public affairs for ARCO Chemical in Lake Charles from 1995 to May 1998; and as administrative aide to the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury in Lake Charles from 1988 to 1996.

In addition to his public service duties, Rainwater also serves as a colonel with the Louisiana Army National Guard in the Joint Director of Military Support for Disaster Response Unit. He previously served as a lieutenant colonel in the Congressional Liaison Office of the Louisiana Army National Guard and as a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army Reserves' 336th Finance Command. For his military service, Rainwater has been awarded the Bronze Star Medal, the Army Commendation Medal and the Combat Action Badge.

Rainwater earned a bachelor's degree in government from McNeese State University in Lake Charles, a master's degree in international relations from Salve Regina University in Rhode Island, and is certified as a local government manager by Louisiana State University.

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