CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A longtime employee of West Virginia state government was named Friday as the director of State Budget Office.

Michael Cook, who recently served for the state Senate as senior budget and policy analyst, was selected to the position.

Cook held his position with the Senate for 15 years.

“Mike is highly regarded by both Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature, and many others throughout state government, and that speaks volumes,” state Revenue Secretary Dave Hardy said. “He’s a perfect fit for the position.”

Gov. Jim Justice said Cook is “highly qualified to serve” in his new role.

“It was just an opportunity I couldn’t resist,” Cook said.

Cook got his start in state politics in 1997 working as a public information officer in the Legislative Office of Reference.

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