Van Hollen Hires Capitol Hill Veteran as New Chief of Staff

    Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) announced this week that he has hired a new chief of staff.

    Tricia “Trish” Russell will replace Karen Robb, who has been Van Hollen’s chief of staff since he became a senator in 2017 and also spent several years on Van Hollen’s staff in the House of Representatives.

    Most recently, Russell served as chief of staff to Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) as well as the chief of staff to Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.).

    Previously she worked for former Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) for a decade, holding a number of leadership positions, handling his work on the House Appropriations Committee, and serving as chief of staff from 2013 to 2016. Russell worked for Israel while he was chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and chairman of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee in the House, which she helped launch in 2015.

    In 2015, Russell she was named one of the “20 Most Powerful Women Staffers” by National Journal. She holds a B.A. from Syracuse University and an executive education certificate from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

    “She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team, and I know she will serve my office and the people of Maryland well,” Van Hollen said in a statement.

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    Josh Kurtz
    Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.