Office of the Secretary


 Secretary Jim Gray

Secretary Gray

Jim Gray is the former mayor of Lexington; during his eight years as mayor, Gray was known for getting things done.
Facing immediate deficits, on day one as mayor, Gray righted Lexington’s financial ship through a series of major reforms, which included reducing the city’s employee health insurance costs while at the same time improving employee satisfaction. His reform of the police and fire pension system preserved the retirements of more than 1,000 retirees while saving millions of dollars for the city. Those savings resulted in investments in public safety. Today, Lexington is ranked the 3rd safest city in the US.

As mayor, Gray focused on three core themes: creating jobs, running government efficiently, and building a great American City. In 2018, Lexington was named the 4th best-run city in the country.

At the start of his career, Jim Gray earned a B.A. from Vanderbilt University and then came home to help grow his family’s construction firm, Gray Construction, accepting a Loeb Fellow appointment at Harvard along the way. Gray Construction is today ranked among the top 5 US builders within major industry sectors, including manufacturing, automotive, food and beverage, and distribution.

 Deputy Secretary Mike Hancock

Deputy Secretary Mike Hancock

Mike Hancock, a native of Princeton, enjoyed a 40-year career at the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, where his responsibilities included the preparation of the cabinet’s biennial road plan from 1990 to 2016. His background is in rural and urban transportation planning and transportation program management, and he held multiple executive and leadership roles during his previous tenure with the Transportation Cabinet. Hancock graduated from the University of Kentucky with a degree in civil engineering.

 ‭(Hidden)‬ State Highway Engineer Andy Barber

Andy Barber PortraitPrior to being named state highway engineer, Barber served as the Department of Highway’s deputy state highway engineer for project delivery and preservation. In that role, he oversaw the six divisions that procure, construct and maintain the Commonwealth’s roads and bridges. Prior to that, he served as the KYTC’s project manager on the Louisville-Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges Project, leading a team that delivered the Downtown Crossing portion ahead of schedule and under budget. He also served as KYTC’s project manager for the Milton Madison Bridge Replacement Project, which was delivered via the largest truss slide in North America. Barber got his start in construction in the Fayette County resident engineer’s office in District 7.

A recipient of the KYTC Civil Engineering Scholarship, Barber earned his Bachelor of Science in civil engineering at the University of Kentucky. Barber resides in Louisville with his wife Jennifer and daughters, Molly and Lucy.

 Chief of Staff Jamie Emmons

Chief of Staff Jamie Emmons

Jamie is a proud Kentuckian, born in Lexington and raised in London. He brought considerable leadership experience to KYTC when he joined Team Kentucky in January 2020 and has been in the thick of some of the Administration's major initiatives.

He was part of a task force that built a statewide COVID vaccine distribution system. More recently, he has been instrumental in a long-term project to build quality, affordable, “high ground" housing for survivors of the Eastern Kentucky flood disaster of 2022. He is also a member of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (IIJA) implementation team, which has administered increased levels of programmatic funding and successfully sought critical discretionary grant awards.

At KYTC, Jamie works closely with Secretary Gray, Deputy Secretary Mike Hancock, State Highway Engineer James Ballinger, and other members of leadership on a myriad of projects and issues.

Prior to joining Team Kentucky, Jamie held leadership roles in both the public and private sectors, including six years as Chief of Staff in Secretary Gray's two terms as Mayor of Lexington. The team's many accomplishments included financial and management reforms, value-added initiatives, and bricks-and-mortar projects such as the downtown Town Branch Commons bicycle and pedestrian corridor, redevelopment of Rupp Arena and the Lexington Center, renovation of the Historic Courthouse, and the 21c Hotel and Museum development.

Jamie is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a degree in Agricultural Economics, a Business minor, and a specialization in Public Policy and Leadership.



 REAL ID Project Manager Sarah Jackson

REAL ID Project Manager Sarah JacksonSarah, a Frankfort attorney, is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law. She also received a B.A. in English at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. In 1982, she was appointed an assistant attorney general, providing legal counsel to various boards and agencies and to the Governor on criminal extradition matters. She represented the Commonwealth in criminal and civil litigation before state and federal trial and appellate courts. 

Jackson had a post at the private law firm of McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie, and Kirkland in the Frankfort office from 1986-1994. She has held high-level positions in state government, including director of the Division of Charitable Gaming in the Kentucky Justice Cabinet, general counsel for Kentucky’s Cabinet for Workforce Development, and executive director of the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance. While at the Registry, Jackson was elected President of the Council on Governmental Ethics Laws. 

After 15 years of service with the Registry, she received the COGEL Outstanding Service Award. She was selected by the University of Kentucky Martin School of Public Policy & Administration and the United States Department of State to participate in a three-week exchange program in Indonesia in 2013.  Jackson is a member of the Kentucky Bar Association and has been admitted to practice before all federal and state trial and appellate courts in Kentucky. She’s also a proud graduate of Leadership Kentucky.

 Legislative Director Kenny Bishop

Legislative Director Kenny BishopKenny grew up in Richmond but has lived in Lexington for the past 20 years. Before his career in government, he was a professional singer/songwriter and record producer. He is also a successful event producer. His government career started in 2003 as the Executive Director of the Kentucky Governor's Mansion, followed by eight years at the Legislative Research Commission. He spent four years in the Lexington Mayor's office as Deputy Communications Director, Council Liaison, and LGBTQ Community Liaison before serving as Legislative Aide to Lexington Councilmember Susan Lamb. He studied Biblical Studies & Christian Theology, Old/New Testament Studies, and Pastoral Care at Lee College and Seminary in Cleveland, TN. He's the proud father of two and grandfather of four. He and his husband, Mason, live in a historic neighborhood on Lexington's west side.

200 Mero StreetFrankfortKY40622KY8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. EST, M-F(502) 564-5102(502) 564 9540KYTC.OfficeoftheSecretary@ky.gov,+Frankfort,+Franklin,+Kentucky+40601&gl=us&sqi=2&z=16&iwloc=A

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