Tiahrt promotes aide, hires new spokeswoman

Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) has promoted Sam Sackett to senior legislative assistant and hired Courtney English to be his new press secretary.
Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) has promoted Sam Sackett to senior legislative assistant and hired Courtney English to be his new press secretary.

Sackett has worked in several capacities in Tiahrt’s office since 2000, from legislative assistant to deputy press secretary. He graduated from Kansas State University and grew up in Fort Scott, Kan.

Patrick G. Ryan
Press Secretary Courtney English, Senior LA Sam Sackett and staff assistant Laurel Scott from Rep. Todd Tiahrt’s (R-Kan.) office.

When the 28-year-old Sackett is not working, he has an unusual pastime: making up board games with his wife, Sarah. They play a game they made up called the Kansas Game, which Sackett describes as a mix of Sorry and Parcheesi. Everyone who plays it says he should market it, Sackett said. Aside from playing board games, Sackett enjoys playing bocchi on his lawn.

Sackett harbors a secret desire to get into the Guinness Book of Records for the longest recorded pogo jump. He learned his pogo-jumping skills in high school, where he was so good that he used to entertain the crowds during halftime of basketball games. But he said he has had a difficult time finding a new pogo stick since his old one broke.

English comes to the office from the American Council of Life Insurers, where she worked in the press department. She also worked for the Bush-Cheney Inaugural Committee and former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating (R).

English, 30, grew up in Wichita, Kan. She attended the University of Oklahoma. When she is not working, she enjoys hanging out with friends and family.

Fox shakes things up on the Hill

Fox News is shifting beats around, one of which involves Capitol Hill coverage.

Major Garrett, 43, previously a general assignment reporter for Fox News, is now the congressional correspondent. He will cover House and Senate elections and handle any breaking news on Capitol Hill. Last year, Garrett’s book Radical Conservatives: How Republicans Changed America, concerning the Republican revolution on Capitol Hill, was published by Crown Forum, a division of Random House.

Garrett, who grew up on a beach in Kearney Mesa, Calif., began his journalism career as a print reporter. From 1990 to 1995 Garret covered Capitol Hill for The Washington Times. After that, he moved to U.S. News & World Report. In 1999, TV came calling when CNN hired him. In 2002 CNN replaced him with Suzanne Malveaux, and three months later Fox News brought him on board.

Brian Wilson, the former congressional correspondent, will be the new anchor for “Weekend Live,” which airs Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 2. In 2005, Wilson broke the news of Sandra Day O’Connor’s retirement from the Supreme Court.

Carl Cameron, 44, who was the White House correspondent, returns to the role of chief political correspondent. He will cover congressional, gubernatorial and presidential elections.

Replacing Cameron at the White House is Brett Baier, who has been the national security correspondent at the Pentagon. Baier is a member of the exclusive Washington men’s club the Capital Club.

Mike Emanuel, previously a general-assignment reporter, replaces Baier at the Pentagon.