Virginia Gov.-elect Gerald L. Baliles named five top aides today, and as with his previously announced cabinet secretaries, most have strong ties to the administration of Gov. Charles S. Robb.
"I'm a close member of the Robb administration, too," Baliles said when asked whether he intended to reward people more directly associated with his campaign. Baliles, who will succeed Robb on Jan. 11, was elected state attorney general four years ago on a Democratic ticket headed by the governor.
Baliles said his latest appointees were selected because of their "ability, experience and judgment." He noted that they are among the first of more than 2,000 appointments he will make.
One of those named today will follow Baliles from the attorney general's staff to the Capitol. He is Leonard L. Hopkins Jr., 37, who will be the governor's $55,000- a-year executive assistant for policy.
Sandra D. Bowen, 44, a longtime friend and aide to Baliles and a former special assistant to Robb, will serve as secretary of the commonwealth, at an annual salary of $45,959. The secretary is a key aide to the governor, handling most of his patronage appointments.
H. Benson Dendy III, 29, who currently is secretary of the commonwealth, will move to a newly created $46,000-a-year position, secretary to the governor's cabinet.
Stewart H. Gamage, 35, another Robb appointee, will remain in Washington as director of the Virginia Liaison Office, an office that lobbies the federal government.
Baliles, noting that he sponsored legislation that created the office, said Gamage "fits the bill: She knows the federal process and is a good communicator."
Before Robb named her to the $54,569-a-year Washington position, she was his senior executive assistant as lieutenant governor.
S. Buford Scott, a Richmond investment banker, was named to the unpaid position of chairman of the Governor's Economic Advisory Council. Scott, chairman of the Richmond brokerage firm of Scott & Stringfellow, replaces W. Roy Smith of Petersburg, a former Democratic legislator who supported Republican Wyatt B. Durrette in the Nov. 5 election. Smith's estimates of the high cost of Baliles' programs were used by Durrette in an effort to portray the Democrat as a liberal. Scott will "stick to economic issues," Baliles said.
He said he expects to name his remaining two cabinet secretaries by Monday. Baliles said he did not consider it a rejection that Fairfax County Executive J. Hamilton Lambert declined to become his secretary of transportation and public safety.
He said Lambert cited a "personal and professional commitment to Fairfax that would keep him there at least two more years." The other unfilled cabinet spot is that of secretary of education.
Lt. Gov.-elect L. Douglas Wilder of Richmond also named his top aides today.
Judith Anderson, who has worked as Wilder's administrative aide in the state Senate since 1975, will be his executive assistant. Joel W. Harris was named to the position of counselor to the lieutenant governor, where he will serve as policy and legislative adviser as well as press secretary. Sandy Williams will be Wilder's executive secretary.