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Arkansas attorney general names new chief deputy, renames future office building

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Arkansas attorney general names new chief deputy, renames future office building

Feb 21, 2024 | 7:31 pm ET
By Advocate Staff
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Arkansas attorney general names new chief deputy, renames future office building
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The Boyle building in downtown Little Rock, where the offices of Arkansas' attorney general will relocate once renovations are complete, will be renamed in honor of Bob R. Brooks Jr., the chief deputy attorney general who died Feb. 11, 2024. (Courtesy photo, Moses Tucker Partners)

Attorney General Tim Griffin promoted his office’s top opinion writer to chief deputy attorney general on Wednesday and announced that the new location of the attorney general’s offices will be named in honor of the late Bob R. Brooks Jr., who had been Griffin’s chief deputy.

Brooks died unexpectedly on Feb. 11. He was 61. Griffin appointed him chief deputy in January 2023, when Griffin took office.

Griffin named Ryan Owsley, who was deputy attorney general for opinions and FOIA, as his new chief deputy. Owsley has worked for three attorneys general and is an expert on the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act. Owsley also has worked for the Bureau of Legislative Research and in private practice.

“Bob was a trusted friend and a giant in the legal community, and there is no replacing him. However, Bob had great confidence in Ryan, and I know Bob would be proud of this decision,” Griffin said in a statement.

Griffin also named Greg McKay as his office’s new chief investigator for the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. McKay, an accountant, has worked in the Medicaid Fraud Control Division since 2017 as a senior special agent and has 14 years of experience as a certified law enforcement officer.

Griffin also said Wednesday that the downtown Little Rock building to which his office will move once renovations are completed will be renamed the Bob R. Brooks Jr. Justice Building.

Plans were already in place to rename the 12-floor, 91,000-square-foot Boyle Building as part of its redevelopment, Griffin said in a statement.

“It became clear that the best way to honor [Brooks’] legacy was to name the building after him,” he said, adding that Brooks was one of the chief proponents of moving into the building.

The Boyle Building was built in 1909 as the “State Bank Building” and was the state’s tallest building at completion. It was designed by architect George Richard Mann, who also designed the State Capitol. The building, located at the intersection of Capitol Avenue and Main Street, has been vacant for almost 26 years.

Moses Tucker Partners is redeveloping the property. The attorney general’s office will occupy the building under a 20-year lease, with an option to purchase after the fifth year.

The AG’s current offices are also downtown in the Tower Building, 323 Center St.