LITTLE ROCK — Buddy Johnson, who has worked for the Arkansas House for 27 years and is currently legislative services coordinator, was named parliamentarian Monday by House Speaker Robert S. Moore Jr.

Johnson replaces Tim Massanelli, who stepped down in November after 36 years.

Moore said Massanelli will be available in an advisory role if needed.

Johnson, who began working for the House in 1985 as information director, has also previously served as assistant parliamentarian.

Before working for the House, he was a news reporter with United Press International and for the Benton Courier.

An Ashdown native, Johnson is a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians and the American Institute of Parliamentarians.

Massanelli stepped down in November to attend to health-related problems that he and his wife were facing. He had served as parliamentarian since 1973, under 19 speakers and seven governors.

House Speaker-designate Darren Williams, D-Little Rock, said he planned to appoint Johnson parliamentarian during the 89th General Assembly, which convenes in January.

"Buddy Johnson is dedicated to this institution and to this state," Williams said, adding Johnson’s "knowledge of rules and procedures will be a great asset during the 89th General Assembly."

The parliamentarian assists the House speaker in deciding all points of order. The parliamentarian also helps the speaker in planning the daily House calendar and assigning bills to appropriate committees.