Rebecca Burkes, a lawyer and former assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and the wife of Arkansas Development and Finance Authority director Aaron Burkes, has been hired as deputy director at the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

Hurst terminated the jobs of her two deputy directors, Kathy Holt and Marynell Branch, last week. Melissa Whitfield, a spokesman for the department, said eliminating their positions — deputy director of museums and deputy director for heritage resources — and replacing them with one would save the agency money. I have requested Burkes’ yearly salary and will update when I receive the answer. Burkes will be paid $94,500. Marynell Branch and Kathy Holt were each paid $99,700.

Before moving to Wisconsin, Rebecca Burkes was corporate counsel for Walmart from 1995-98 and taught at John Brown University in Siloam Springs. She was also vice president and chief counsel for the Burkes Co., a real estate development firm. Aaron Burkes is a lawyer and former one-term Republican legislator from Lowell. In March, he was named associate vice chancellor for business affairs at the University of Arkansas, but days later was tapped by Gov. Hutchinson for the ADFA job.