While South Dakotans die from her lack of leadership, Governor Kristi Noem is also seeing numerous officials leave her cabinet. Her Transportation Secretary has left, her Game Fish and Parks Secretary is leaving, and now her Education Secretary is changing jobs:
Governor Kristi Noem announced that Ben Jones, Secretary of the South Dakota Department of Education, will be taking a new position as State Historian and Director of the South Dakota State Historical Society, effective December 9th, 2020.
“Ben has been a dedicated leader of the Department of Education,” said Governor Noem. “He has supported students and educators alike, working with schools on improving opportunities and outcomes in our K-12 schools. The South Dakota Historical Society will benefit tremendously from his experience and expertise.”
Jones replaces the retiring Jay Vogt who has served as the Director of the Historical Society since 2003 [Austin Goss, “South Dakota Department of Education Secretary Moves to State Historical Society,” KOTA-TV, 2020.11.20].
Poor Dr. Jones: when Noem announced she would appoint him to DOE back in December 2018, he was just supposed to stay in Pierre for six months. But then in May 2019, perhaps unable to find any other qualified educators who would put up with her anti-education baloney, Noem promoted Jones from interim to permanent. Now Jones has gotten free of DOE, but he’s still stuck working in Pierre. Let’s hope the Historical Society will let him Zoom in from Sioux Falls.
Now Noem’s challenge will be finding replacements who don’t mind working in a pandemic-reckless environment with a Trumpist boss who will be checked out most of the time campaigning on Fox News….