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Hank Dye Retires; UT Shifts Lobbyist Lineup

The University of Tennessee will split its government relations and communications department next month following the retirement of the vice president who oversaw those duties, President Joe DiPietro told staff in an email Wednesday.
From the News Sentinel:
Hank Dye, vice president of public and government relations since 2005, will retire July 11, something he had discussed with the president since the beginning of the year, DiPietro wrote. Anthony Haynes, UT’s lobbyist in Nashville, will become vice president for government relations and advocacy, reporting directly to DiPietro.
Kurt Schlieter, UT’s advocate in Washington, D.C., will become assistant vice president for federal relations and continue to work out of D.C. DiPietro wrote in the email that he is still examining the system’s communications strategy and has asked a seven-person review committee to give recommendations for how to structure a department to handle communications, marketing and branding.
In the meantime, Gina Stafford, assistant vice president and director of communications for the system, will manage day-to-day operations.

Government Lobbying Government (and UT’s lobbyist in Washington)

The News Sentinel today carries a national story on state and local governments hiring lobbyists to work in Washington at a cost of $1.2 billion over the past decade – complete with a state-by-state chart on the spending.
A related story by Steve Ahillen provides more Tennessee-specific information, including a report on the University of Tennessee’s full-time lobbyist in Washingnton.
t has proved worthwhile to have someone (in Washington),” said Hank Dye, UT’s vice president for public and government relations. “If you don’t have somebody up there representing you, I think you’d be missing out.”
(UT) has a full-time Washington lobbyist on its staff, Kurt Schlieter, whose title is Associate Vice President and Director of Federal Relations. He has been on the job since 2003 after serving as legislative assistant and appropriations associate on the staff of then-Tennessee Congressman Zach Wamp. He makes $132,599.96 a year.
“There’s more lobbying done by the University of Tennessee than probably any other public institution in the state of Tennessee,” said U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr., R-Tenn.
And, most, but not all, is done through Schlieter.

(Note: UT also has a lobbyist in Nashville, Anthony Haynes, who on occasion — as in combating the ‘guns on campus’ bill or dealing with budget issues — is assisted by Dye and others.)

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