Administrative Staff


Mary Kay Hill                             Chief of Staff 

Mary Kay Hill has worked on the development and implementation of education policy in Wyoming since 1995. She advises Governor Mead on education issues from preschool through workforce. She also coordinates special projects as needed. Mary Kay served as Policy Director to former Governor Jim Geringer from 1995 through 1998. She has worked in leadership roles at the Wyoming Department of Education and at the School Facilities Department. She was Media Director for U.S. Senator Alan Simpson for ten years before returning to Wyoming. A fourth generation Wyoming citizen, Mary Kay and her husband, Bill, are the parents of two children. All four members of the Hill family are graduates of the University of Wyoming.

E-mail Mary Kay at marykay.hill@wyo.gov 

Carol Statkus                             Policy Development and General Counsel 

Statkus is General Counsel to the Governor, which includes responsibility for policy oversight in the Mead administration. She was Chief of the Civil Division when she worked with the Governor-Elect in the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Mead cites her depth of knowledge in numerous areas as a key to his preparation for serving as governor.

E-mail Carol at carol.statkus@wyo.gov

Richard Barrett                         Special Counsel to the Governor 

Barrett is Special Counsel to the Governor. The Lusk native was a longtime law partner of former Governor and Secretary of the Interior, Stanley K. Hathaway, and later established his own law firm in Cheyenne. A former president of the Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association, Barrett has extensive litigation and trial experience in a broad range of areas.

E-mail Richard at richard.barrett@wyo.gov

Tatum Soto                                 Administrative Assistant 

Tatum has lived in Cheyenne for 35 years and has approximately 10 years of administration experience. She is married with 2 children and enjoys spending summer weekends with her family in Glendo camping and wakeboarding.

E-mail Tatum at tatum.soto@wyo.gov

Chris Mickey                               Communications Director 

Chris was raised right here in Cheyenne. After graduating from the University of Wyoming with a degree in political science in 2009, he moved to Washington D.C. to work as the Press Assistant to U.S. Senator John Barrasso. In 2014, he headed back to Wyoming as the Media and Public Relations Manager for the Wyoming Office of Tourism. He began working for Governor Mead in 2016. In addition to being the Communications Director, Chris also handles new and emerging technology policy for the office.  In his free time, Chris likes to travel the world and documents his adventures through photography.  

E-mail Chris at chris.mickey1@wyo.gov

Ruth Critchfield                            Scheduler 

Prior to becoming Governor Matt Mead’s scheduler, Critchfield worked in the United States Attorney’s Office beginning in 2006 in the Administrative Services area. Although born and raised in Kansas, she moved to Wyoming in 1981 after graduating from St. John’s College in Winfield, Kansas, and considers the state her home. She worked for the Department of Education from 1983-1987, Gilchrist Elementary School from 1987-2000 and was the executive assistant at Unicover Corporation from 2000-2006. She and her husband, Dale, have two married daughters with grandchildren. She enjoys spending time outdoors with her family in Wyoming.

E-mail Ruth at ruth.critchfield@wyo.gov

Phuong Tran                                  Administrative Assistant 

Phuong was born and raised in San Francisco, California. He served nearly a decade in the United States Army under USACAPOC (United States Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command) with combat deployments overseas in the Global War on Terrorism. He also has over 10 years of administrative assistant experience, most of which were at Wells Fargo Bank.

He and his wife, Thanh-Nga, had previously lived in Laramie, Wyoming for 4 years and then moved out of the state. They have since moved back to Wyoming and settled in Cheyenne.

E-mail Phuong at phuong.tran@wyo.gov

Dalena Phipps                                   Administrative Assistant 

Dalena was raised in Cheyenne and enjoys outdoor activities, sports, and spending time with her family.
Before joining the Governor’s Office, Dalena worked for state agencies including the Division of Criminal Investigation and the Wyoming Business Council.  
 

E-mail Dalena at dalena.phipps@wyo.gov

Marie  Castleberry                            Administrative Assistant 

Marie Castleberry is a Wyoming native.  She was born in Newcastle, moved to Cheyenne in middle school and graduated from East High School.  Marie received a debate scholarship and attended Casper College. She went on to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Arts and Science from the University of Wyoming.  Marie enjoys gardening in the summer and taking walks with her husband, James, and their dog.

E-mail Marie at marie.castleberry@wyo.gov