I have enjoyed serving as Vermont State Auditor for the past three and a half years. I work with a great group of people and it is a challenge and an honor to promote transparency and to improve accountability in state government. Some of our accomplishments can be found here.
I have a B.A. from Williams College and a J.D. from SUNY Buffalo Law School. I came to Vermont in 1988 to work for Bernie Sanders in Burlington’s Community & Economic Development Office. I left City Hall in 1993 and was a self-employed policy analyst for 19 years prior to my election in 2012.
As the author of the Job Gap Study (a series of reports from 1997 to 2010), I provided policy guidance for Legislators dealing with economic development and related tax policies, the livable wage, and the benefits of greater in-state purchasing.
I have a history of challenging orthodoxy and looking outside the box for solutions. As a numbers guy, I am actively engaged in the work of the office. I am a stubborn investigator who does not take short cuts or settle for less than thorough methods.
Tracking the money raised and spent by state government is important but it is just the beginning of the Auditor’s job, not the end. The Auditor must also determine if taxpayer money is being spent wisely. That is, do state programs achieve the goals intended by the Legislature? Are they cost-effective? I’ve been asking these tough questions for years.
Sometimes this type of work angers powerful interests. After all, bureaucrats and special interests don’t like to read that their programs may be ineffective and a waste of taxpayer money. Yet asking difficult questions and speaking uncomfortable truths are exactly the tasks of the state Auditor.