LePage’s communications director to step down

Posted Feb. 08, 2012, at 10:54 a.m.
Last modified Feb. 08, 2012, at 2:09 p.m.
Peter Rogers
Peter Rogers

AUGUSTA, Maine — Gov. Paul LePage’s communications director said Wednesday that he will resign from his post effective Feb. 17.

Peter Rogers was hired last July to oversee communications for the Republican governor and called the last eight months “a great ride.” He also it was time for him to move on to something else.

“I have some irons out there, but I’m not sure exactly what I’ll do,” Rogers said in an interview.

Rogers said there has been no acrimony between him and the governor or between him and any senior staff members. He said he had a conversation recently with LePage’s chief of staff John McGough and simply decided it was best to step aside.

“All along, this was temporary,” Rogers said. “I was asked to come in and help out and I was happy to do it.”

He said he has accomplished many of his goals, including centralizing state government communications through his office and making the governor more accessible to the media. LePage has had a sometimes combative relationship with the press.

Prior to joining the governor’s staff, Rogers had been deputy commissioner for the state Department of Defense, Veterans and Emergency Management. He also served as the primary spokesman for the Maine National Guard during the Gulf War and the first several years of the global war on terror.

Last summer, Rogers replaced Dan Demeritt, who had stepped down last April to address personal business matters. Demeritt had been with the governor during his successful campaign in 2010 and his transition into office. Demeritt has since started his own political consulting firm.

Rogers, who lives in Yarmouth with his wife and five daughters, said consulting could be in his future as well, but he didn’t rule out staying in government.

The governor’s spokeswoman, Adrienne Bennett, said she did not have a timetable for when Rogers might be replaced.

“There will be a transition in the communications office for a period of time,” she said Wednesday. “It’s a significant loss. I’ve had a great time working with Peter and I’ve learned a lot. It will be sad to see him go.”

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