Retiring & Hiring
Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay recently announced the retirement of Chief Deputy District Attorney Dan Dunbar. Dunbar, originally from New Jersey, began his career by serving in the United States Air Force. He then attended the University of Colorado State, followed by law school at the University of Kansas. Dunbar began his legal career as a prosecutor in Franklin and Douglas counties before transferring to the Shawnee County District Attorney’s Office in 2005. Since 2005, Dunbar’s career has been focused on prosecuting the most violent and serious offenses in Shawnee County. In January 2017, Kagay, then a newly elected DA, named Dunbar his chief deputy. Dunbar’s retirement marks the end of a 28-year career in prosecution.
Appointments & Promotions
The Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library Board of Trustees has announced that Marie Pyko, the library’s public services director and a longtime Topeka resident, has been selected to serve as the library’s CEO. The announcement was made by Jim Edwards, trustee board chair, and Joan Hicks, trustee and search committee chair, at the Sept. 16 meeting of the TSCPL board. Pyko will begin her CEO duties on Oct. 22. She replaces former CEO Gina J. Millsap, who retired Dec. 1, 2020. Thad Hartman, chief of staff, has served as interim CEO for the past 10 months.
Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay recently announced Brett Watson has been named chief deputy district attorney, following the retirement of former chief deputy DA Dan Dunbar. Watson has served as a deputy district attorney since Kagay’s administration began in 2017 and was named the 2019 Prosecutor of the Year by the Kansas County and District Attorney’s Association. Since 2017, Watson has been responsible primarily for the prosecution of homicide and sex offenses. As chief deputy, he will now oversee the litigation of all adult felony cases handled by the DA’s office.
Awards, Honors & Recognition
National trade publication Rural Electric Magazine has recognized Kelsey Schrempp, executive assistant and manager of office services at Kansas Electric Power Cooperative, as one of the nation’s top 20 “rising stars” in the magazine’s September 2021 issue. In the first-ever Rural Electric Magazine compilation of electric-cooperative stars, Schrempp was selected from a pool of 80 nominees for standing out during a challenging COVID-19 lockdown period. She was instrumental in helping Kansas Electric Power Cooperative pivot to two virtual board meetings for 36 trustees, using new technologies to streamline processes, save money, and engage employees and members. As chair of the company’s first “Employee Experience Team,” Schrempp’s efforts also dramatically increased employee engagement scores, as noted in employee satisfaction surveys.
The Kansas Department of Transportation recently expressed its appreciation for two Topeka-area employees celebrating service anniversaries in October. Connie Anguish, an engineering technician specialist, and Lori Jones, a data warehouse supervisor, are each celebrating 20 years with KDOT.