AUGUSTA — The Maine Senate on Thursday unanimously approved John Butera’s nomination to serve as commissioner of the Maine Department of Labor.

Butera will replace Jeanne Paquette, who stepped down as labor commissioner to fill a position at the University of Southern Maine. A Waterville resident, Butera has served as Gov. Paul LePage’s senior economic adviser since 2011 and has also worked on economic and community development, business finance, workforce development and labor issues.

Previously, Butera spent nearly 30 years in economic development in the public and private realms, including holding positions within the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development and serving as executive director of the Central Maine Growth Council. Butera holds a master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania.