Carney nominates new labor secretary

Cerron Cade

DOVER — Gov. John Carney has nominated Cerron Cade, currently the director of the Delaware Division of Small Business, Development, and Tourism, to serve as the next Secretary of the Delaware Department of Labor.

Mr. Cade’s nomination must be approved by the Delaware Senate.

As Labor Secretary, Mr. Cade would lead a 420-employee department that oversees workforce development and training programs for the State of Delaware, unemployment insurance programs, labor law enforcement, and economic forecasting for the state.

Mr. Cade would replace Patrice Gilliam-Johnson, who will join Delaware State University as Dean of Graduate, Adult, and Continuing Studies next month. Gilliam-Johnson will leave office as Labor Secretary on February 2.

Ms. Gilliam Johnson, who was a cabinet secretary for Gov. Markell, has been holding the position for about a year without Gov. Carney renominating her.

“Cerron has a proven ability to lead, and the knowledge and experience necessary to take on this important role,” said Gov. Carney in a prepared statement. “The Department of Labor’s work connecting Delawareans with relevant job training and workforce development programs has never been more important.

Last year, as acting director of the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO), Mr. Cade managed the dissolution of DEDO and the creation of the new Division of Small Business, Development, and Tourism within the Delaware Department of State. Currently, he serves as the division’s director, leading a team responsible for providing key services to Delaware businesses, administration of the Delaware Strategic Fund, and marketing Delaware tourism.

Mr. Cade grew up in Washington D.C. and moved to Delaware to study Political Science and Law Studies at Delaware State University. He has worked as a Legislative Aide for the Delaware State House of Representatives, New Castle County Deputy County Director for U.S. Senator Tom Carper and State Projects Director for then-Congressman John Carney.

Mr. Cade joined Governor Jack Markell’s staff as Legislative Liaison in 2015. Last summer, Governor Carney appointed Mr. Cade to serve as DEDO’s Acting Director to lead the office’s transition, where he previously served as Deputy Director.

Mr. Cade lives in Wilmington with his wife, Kasmira, and two daughters, Jonnie and Toni.

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