Haslam names Duncan, Kustoff to Board of Parole

Gov. Bill Haslam has appointed relatives of two prominent Republican political figures — U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr. of Knoxville and former U.S. Attorney David Kustoff of Memphis — to seats on the state Board of Parole.

The appointees, listed along with 102 people appointed to 64 different state boards and commissions in a gubernatorial news release last week, are Zane Duncan, a son of the congressman, and Roberta Kustoff, wife of the political activist who headed former President George W. Bush’s Tennessee campaign before being appointed U.S. attorney by Bush.

David Kustoff recently said he is considering whether to seek election as Tennessee’s male representative on the Republican National Committee, succeeding the current Tennessee National Committeeman, John Ryder, who must step down later this year because of an RNC term-limits rule.

Members of the Parole Board are paid a salary of $95,000 per year to sit in panels and decide whether state prison inmates should be granted parole. The panel’s chairman — currently former state Rep. Richard Montgomery of Sevierville — gets $109,334.

Duncan and Kustoff replace two members of the parole board appointed by former Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen, former state Rep. Ronnie Cole of Dyersburg and Patsy Bruce of Nashville.

Haslam also reappointed Tim Gobble, a Republican who formerly served as Bradley County sheriff, to a new six-year term on the board. Gobble was originally appointed to the board by Haslam in 2013 to fill out an unexpired term.

Note: The referenced release on Haslam board and commission appointments is posted HERE.