Hutchinson names Rural Services director; to keep current Oil and Gas and Parole leaders | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Hutchinson names Rural Services director; to keep current Oil and Gas and Parole leaders

Posted By on Wed, Dec 31, 2014 at 1:28 PM

click to enlarge AMY FECHER: To head Rural Services.
  • AMY FECHER: To head Rural Services.
Scratch that rumor about Fireball Holland as a contender for director of Rural Services.

Asa Hutchinson, the governor elect, announced that Amy Fecher would be director of the agency, succeeding John Andrews. Currently working for the Heart Association, she was deputy director of the agency under Mike HUckabee's administration.

Hutchinson also said he'd retain Lawrence Bengal as director of the Oil and Gas Commission and John Felts as chairman of the Parole Board.

His news release follows:


Governor-Elect Asa Hutchinson has announced Amy Fecher as the new Director of the Department of Rural Services. In addition, he will retain Lawrence Bengal as Director of the Oil and Gas Commission and John Felts as Chairman of the Arkansas Parole Board.

Governor-Elect Hutchinson issued the following statement on Amy Fecher:

“I am pleased to announce Amy Fecher as the new Director of Rural Services. Amy understands rural Arkansas, and her experience, background and familiarity with this department makes her the obvious choice to lead the department and its mission. I have no doubt that she will help enhance the quality of life for rural Arkansans and serve the state well.”

Fecher is the former Deputy Director of the Arkansas Department of Rural Services under Governor Mike Huckabee. She is currently the Manager of Campaign Research for the Voices for Healthy Kids Team with the American Heart Association, a position she has held since 2013. Prior to that, she worked for the international non-profit, Save the Children, for six years. Fecher is a graduate of the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. She lives in Sherwood. 

Governor-Elect Hutchinson issued the following statement on Lawrence Bengal:

“Natural resources are critically important to our state, and Larry understands that better than anyone. He has done an outstanding job as Director of the Arkansas Oil and Gas Commission for the last 10 years, and I am pleased to announce that he has agreed to continue in that position in my administration."

Bengal is currently the Director of the Arkansas Oil and Gas Commission, a position he has held since 2004, and has over 35 years experience in the public and private sector. He previously served as the Governor’s representative for Illinois and currently serves as the Governor’s representative for Arkansas to the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC). Bengal holds a degree in Geology from the University of Wisconsin. He lives in Little Rock.

Governor-Elect Hutchinson issued the following statement on John Felts:

“Keeping our communities safe, while giving those, who deserve it, a second chance is a vital part of growing a robust economy. John has shown fine leadership in this department as Chairman of the Arkansas Parole Board, and I am pleased to announce that he will continue that role in my administration.”

Felts is currently the Chairman of the Arkansas Parole Board, a full-time position he has held since 2011. He was first appointed to the board in 1998 by then Governor Mike Huckabee. He was reappointed by Governor Beebe to a new 7-year term in 2012, which runs until 2019. Felts is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Monticello. He lives in East End.

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