CHEYENNE, Wyo. (KIFI) – Governor Mark Gordon has announced Friday the appointment of Darlena Potter to replace Ruth Van Mark as Wyoming's Public Records Ombudsman.
Potter has served as Governor Gordon's Constituent Liaison since September of 2019, serving effectively as a conduit that provides assistance to both state agencies and constituents. Potter has previous experience serving in both state and federal government agencies. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Administration of Justice from the University of Wyoming and a Masters in Public Administration from Grand Canyon University.
The Ombudsman position was created with the passage of Senate File 57 in 2019. The Public Records Ombudsman serves as a resource for the public to resolve issues regarding public records requests submitted to state and local government agencies. The position also provides aid to state and local governments to understand their obligations in response to such requests. The Ombudsman is also charged with mediating disputes relating to the timeliness of a records production, an agency's claim of privilege or confidentiality, and fees.
“I am excited and honored to have this opportunity to provide a greater contribution to both Governor Gordon and the state,” Potter said, adding that she feels very fortunate to follow in Van Mark's shoes.
Potter will interface with state agencies and their Public Information Officers to review their public records processes and procedures. She also plans to continue to streamline the dispute resolution process, as well as conduct outreach and education efforts to organizations and associations impacted by the Wyoming Public Records Act.