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Ravnsborg Grows Government, Creates Chief of Staff Position for Donor

During the campaign, Kristi Noem said she’d expand government to handle abortion cases, suggesting that she’d need more lawyers to handle the job that Republican ticketmate Jason Ravnsborg would not be qualified to handle as Attorney General.

Attorney General-Elect Ravnsborg has now beaten Noem to the punch. He has created a whole new position for one of his campaign donors to help manage the A.G.’s office for him.

Timothy Bormann, Jason Ravnsborg's crutch
Timothy Bormann, Jason Ravnsborg’s crutch

As I reported yesterday, Ravnsborg is hiring notable campaign donor, longtime campaign flunky, and Faulk County state’s attorney Timothy Bormann as his chief of staff. I wanted to see just how much of a raise Bormann will be getting by going to work in state government, but I couldn’t recall the name of the current Attorney General’s chief of staff. A.G. Marty Jackley has a number of assistant attorneys general—12 in the appellate division, 10 civil, 12 criminal, one with four staff in Medicaid fraud—plus all the nice but unlisted folks at DCI and Consumer Protection—but I don’t think I’ve ever heard him or anyone else mention Jackley’s “chief of staff.” The only chief of staff in Pierre I can think of is the Governor’s chief of staff, Tony Venhuizen (salary $146,578.69).

I checked with my usual point of contact in the A.G.’s office, spokeswoman Sara Rabern (salary $69,569.76). Might she be the chief of staff? Rabern laughed at that suggestion and told me Attorney General Jackley does not have a chief of staff.

Jason Ravnsborg campaigned as an Army Reserve logistics expert, but apparently the logistics of running the Attorney General’s office are already so overwhelming that he has to create an entirely new government position to take care of business.

Related: Attorney Classes 1 through 5 in the A.G.’s office make between $67,219.11 and $136,318 a year. The Attorney General gets $113,441.44. Watch for the salary we taxpayers will pay Bormann to tell Ravnsborg when to tie his shoes.


  1. leslie 2018-12-06 09:08

    DENR has several lawyers. AG offices have up to 100 lawyers, staff. What is SD AG office budget?

  2. Michael L. Wyland 2018-12-06 12:05


    See the SD state budget page, which includes links to both the budget summary and the “big book” with the detail. Page 47 of the summary indicates that the AG’s office gets $11.7 million in general funds. This presumably does not include federal funds and other revenue sources. See: for links to current and historical budget information.

  3. leslie 2018-12-06 12:57


    Omg the culmination of the GOP grand strategy (Fox media, SCOTUS, birther, RAGA, governors, militarization, local governments) elected Trump Ravnsborg Thune Rounds Noem, AND INTO PUTIN’S LAP.

    once again lefties will bail out this mess, even here in SD.

  4. Debbo 2018-12-06 21:07

    That’s got to be the dorkiest photo of Ravsbutt I’ve seen! 😆😆😆😆

  5. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-12-07 06:06

    When we elect incompetent officials, government is bound to grow, because incompetents like Ravnsborg are dependent on their cronies to cover their incompetence.

    Alas, those cronies will be in positions to demand more favors, and the incompetence will foster corruption.

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