Gov. Kate Brown on Tuesday removed Lottery Director Jack Roberts from his job in the wake of what appeared to be a messy dispute over the agency’s management.
Roberts defended his actions at the agency and said he refused the governor’s request to resign.
Brown’s spokeswoman, Kristen Grainger, refused to discuss the details of Roberts’ removal, saying it was a personnel matter.
However, Grainger did say, “Gov. Brown seeks new leadership for an agency that has some management problems as she continues to develop her cabinet of state agency directors.”
Roberts lost his job soon after he had placed his chief operating officer, Roland Iparraguirre, on paid administrative leave. Dispute over that action apparently led to the governor’s action Tuesday.
Brown appointed Barry Pack — who had long worked for her when she was a legislator and secretary of state — to serve as interim director of the lottery. Pack has most recently been chief administrative officer of the Department of Administrative Services.
Roberts took over the helm of the lottery in 2013 under the administration of Gov. John Kitzhaber. Roberts is a former state labor commissioner who unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for governor in 2002.