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Bryan Steil victory

Republican congressional candidate Bryan Steil speaks to supporters on Nov. 6 at Veterans Terrace in Burlington after he won the race to be the next U.S. representative for Wisconsin's 1st District. 

RACINE — In January, Bryan Steil will take over representing Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District and although Steil is new to politics, his staff is not.

Throughout the fall campaign, Steil, a corporate attorney and UW Board of Regents member from Janesville, pitched himself as an outsider hoping to make a difference in the nation’s capital. But he has since hired two individuals with decades of experience in Washington, D.C. and in the state.

Steil has announced that former state Sen. Rich Zipperer will serve as his chief of staff in Wisconsin. Zipperer previously served as the commissioner for the Wisconsin Public Service Commission. Prior to this appointment, Zipperer served as Gov. Scott Walker’s chief of staff from 2015 to 2018.

Upon appointing him to the PSC, Walker said at the time that Zipperer is “reform-minded and a man of strong character, and I thank him for his service to our state, not only as chief of staff.”

Zipperer also worked for Wisconsin Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner in Washington, D.C., and after leaving Sensenbrenner he was elected to the state Assembly in 2006 and moved on to the state Senate in 2010.

In 2012, Zipperer left the Senate to work for Walker.

Washington chief

For his chief of staff in Washington, Steil has selected Ryan Carney, a 2002 graduate of The Catholic University of America, which is located in Washington, and who worked as a “government relations professional” in the capital from 2000 to 2016 when he became chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-N.J.

Steil said he is “pleased to have two experienced chiefs of staff on board to help serve the people of Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District.”

“Carney’s depth of knowledge and experience on Capitol Hill and Zipperer’s know-how and understanding of the concerns of the people of Wisconsin will prove to be real assets,” Steil said. “This strong, experienced team can help ensure that our voice is heard as we work to solve problems for the people of our part of the state.”

Both men are planning to begin working for Steil in early January after he is sworn in to office.

On Nov. 6, Steil defeated Democrat Randy Bryce, an ironworker and union activist from Caledonia, to be the next representative for the district. Since 1999, the district has been represented by House Speaker Paul Ryan, who is retiring at the end of his term.

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Ricardo Torres covers federal, state and Racine County politics along with the Village of Mount Pleasant. He bleeds Wisconsin sports teams.

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