Attorney general hires former Yoder staffer


Attorney General Derek Schmidt on Thursday announced he’s hiring former Congressman Kevin Yoder’s spokesman and campaign manager.

Schmidt announced that C.J. Grover will become the attorney general’s public information officer, serving as primary spokesman for the attorney general’s office.

Grover ran Yoder’s unsuccessful re-election campaign last fall and worked as the congressman’s communications director since 2015.

He also worked as deputy military legislative assistant to U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts from 2012 to 2014.

He has a bachelor’s in finance and a law degree from the University of Kansas.

The previous public information officer, Jennifer Montgomery, will now become Schmidt’s public affairs director.

She will coordinate the educational programs of the office and will continue to serve as director of human trafficking outreach and education.

John Milburn, a former staffer with former Gov. Sam Brownback and outgoing Gov. Jeff Colyer, will now join the attorney general as executive officer.

Milburn worked as director of legislative and public affairs at the Kansas Department of Administration and for many years as a reporter for the Associated Press in Topeka.

Denise Coatney will serve as Schmidt’s executive assistant and scheduler. She previously served as scheduler for former Gov. Sam Brownback and outgoing Gov. Jeff Colyer. She is replacing Delberta Pfeifer, who is retiring in the spring.

Karla Werth has been hired as director of administrative operations for the attorney general. She is responsible for constituent services.

She previously served as director of constituent services for Brownback and Colyer as well as former Gov. Bill Graves.