[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/01/13/art.getty.rnc.steele.jpg caption="RNC chairman Michael Steele has a new top adviser."]Washington (CNN) - The Republican National Committee has hired a veteran GOP operative to fill its communications director slot, a position that has been vacant for months amid a slew a public missteps by Chairman Michael Steele.
Doug Heye, who worked for Steele's 2006 Senate campaign and often appears on television as a political analyst, will now advise RNC chairman Michael Steele on communications strategy. A North Carolina native, Heye also directed communications for Sen. Richard Burr's campaign.
Unlike Steele, who has angered establishment party figures during his brief tenure as GOP chief, Heye is a well-liked figure on Capitol Hill.
"I'm proud to have Doug Heye join our team," Steele said in a statement. "His experience in campaigns and the halls of Congress brings a unique skill set to our communications operation.
Steele also promoted press secretary Katie Wright to deputy communications director.
Heye will be filling a job left vacant by former RNC communications director Trevor Francis, who left the committee in November along with his deputy Todd Irons. National press secretary Gail Gitcho left her job last week to join Sen. Scott Brown's office.