Gov. Nikki Haley appointed an agency lieutenant Monday to head the state department that oversees professional licensing and workplace and fire safety.
Richele Taylor has succeeded Holly Pisarik as director of the S.C. Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation. Taylor was named LLR’s deputy director of administration this year after a 14-year legal career, most recently with Fisher & Phillips.
Pisarik is not going far, Haley said, but she declined to provide details: “She will be in our circle.”
Haley’s 16-member cabinet has two openings at the departments of Social Services and Juvenile Justice.
Pisarik was named to lead LLR in 2012 after Catherine Templeton became head at the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Services.
Pisarik was LLR's chief advice counsel at the time of her appointment. She also specialized in health care while practicing at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough and worked for the Florida Department of Health.
Haley said Templeton and Pisarik have reformed an agency that she called “an absolute mess.” The governor, who has made cutting red tape a priority, said Pisarik cut fees and investigation times to make it more customer-friendly during her tenure.
Taylor said she would work to put more training and agency forms online, such as applications, and provide more certifications to firefighters.
Taylor’s appointment, which needs Senate confirmation, is the fifth cabinet change since the summer and the third since the governor was re-elected last month.
Last month, Haley budget aide Christian Soura was named head of Health and Humans Services, while Margaret Barber has announced plans to leave Juvenile Justice.
In June, Rick Reames was named the director at the Department of Revenue and Amber Gillum became acting director at DSS after Lillian Koller‘s departure amid controversy at the state’s child-welfare agency.
Three cabinet members are staying for a second term: Bobby Hitt at Commerce; Duane Parrish at Parks, Recreation and Tourism; and Bryan Stirling at Corrections.