Gayle Manchin named West Virginia Secretary of Department of Education and the Arts

by Jeffrey Morris

CHARLESTON, WV (WCHS/WVAH) — Gayle Manchin, wife of U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, was named by West Virginia Gov.-elect Jim Justice as secretary of the Department of Education and the Arts.

Justice made the announcement in a news release on Friday.

Manchin served on the state West Virginia Board of Education from 2007 to 2015.

As secretary of the Department of Education and the Arts, she takes a post that was previously held by Kay Goodwin, who retired. The department’s website lists Randall Reid-Smith as the acting secretary.

“Gayle Manchin has a real passion for our state and making sure our kids get a fair shot at success,” Justice said in a news release. “I know she will help shine a spotlight on West Virginia’s rich history and culture in her new role. She will help my administration share the beauty and spirit of West Virginia with the world, and work to improve the lives of our people.”

Manchin said she is honored to serve the state in the new role.

“West Virginia’s history and culture must be preserved and promoted, and I am looking forward to this opportunity to help our state,” she said in the news release. “I want to enhance the quality of life for all of our citizens in this new role.”

Manchin previously worked at the Office of Secretary of Education and the Arts, where she put in place the WV Partnerships to Assure Student Success initiative (WV PASS). She earned her bachelor’s degree in language arts and education and a master’s degree in reading from West Virginia University. In addition, she holds a second master’s in educational technology leadership from Salem International University. She has taught at Fairmont State University and in Marion County public schools.