Governor Abbott Announces Senior Staff Departure

October 21, 2019 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

Governor Greg Abbott today announced the departure of his Special Advisor, David Whitley, from the Office of the Governor after nearly 15 years of state service. As part of his most recent duties, Whitley helped oversee the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism, the Texas Enterprise Fund, Events Trust Fund, Governor’s University Research Initiative, Travel Texas, Texas Music Office, Texas Film Commission, Texas Workforce Investment Council, Texas Military Preparedness Commission and the State of Texas Mexico Office. He has also served as a key liaison for state agencies.

“David has been by my side as a trusted advisor for a decade and a half, and his collaborative leadership style and commitment to accountability are second-to-none,” Governor Abbott said. “Over that time, David has been an invaluable resource within my office, helping guide and direct many successful initiatives during my time as Attorney General and now as Governor. His dedication to public service and to helping advance Texas is unwavering, and I am confident that David will prove to be instrumental wherever he’s involved.” 

Before serving as Special Advisor, David Whitley was appointed and served as the 112th Texas Secretary of State—the State’s Chief Election Officer, Chief International Protocol Officer, and the Governor’s chief advisor and liaison to Mexico and the border region.  While Secretary of State, he was appointed to serve as Texas’ Border Commerce Coordinator and Chair of the Border Trade Advisory Committee, which advises the Texas Department of Transportation to advance infrastructure projects that facilitate cross-border trade between Texas and Mexico.  He previously served Governor Abbott as Deputy Chief of Staff and as Appointments Director, helping place talented Texans to serve on the governing boards of state agencies, and as Assistant Deputy Attorney General in the Office of the Attorney General. He also previously served as a policy advisor in the Texas Senate and worked for a software startup. Whitley is a member of the State Bar of Texas, earned his finance and law degrees from The University of Texas at Austin, serves in the UT Law Mentorship Program, and is a native of Alice, Texas.