Melinda Smyser is a former teacher and school counselor. She received a bachelor of science with a double major in C/T/Design and education and extension from the University of Idaho. She has a master's degree in education/counseling from the College of Idaho.
“I am excited for the opportunity to put my experience to work for Governor Otter and his administration to help all Idahoans enhance their economic opportunities and steer the state toward meetings its job and employment needs for the future. That will include tackling the challenges of Idaho’s changing demographics, aging population and a shortage of qualified workers for today’s increasingly technical jobs,” Smyser said. “Idaho’s economy is growing, so a big part of my job at Labor will be ensuring that Idaho employers have people to hire with the skills needed to keep our businesses and communities thriving.”
The long-time Canyon County and Idaho Republican Party leader managed Risch’s 2014 U.S. Senate re-election campaign and represented Canyon and Gem counties in the Idaho Senate from 2009 through 2012.
The Canyon County native and her husband, attorney and former State senator Skip Smyser, have four grown children.