Transition Team Building Underway
CT News Junkie, November 9, 2018
by Christine Stuart
Governor-elect Ned Lamont met with Gov. Dannel P. Malloy Thursday at the executive residence to discuss the transition before heading to the state Capitol to announce the first members of his transition team. Some of the faces are familiar like Attorney General George Jepsen and state Rep. Toni Walker of New Haven, two others are from the business world, and one is from higher education.
Lamont announced that Elsa Nunez, president of Eastern Connecticut State University, would be a member of his transition team along with Garrett Moran, president of Year Up, a nonprofit that provides technical and life skills to low-income high school graduates who are not employed.
Before Moran joined Year Up in 2013 he served as chief operating officer for Blackstone’s Private Equity Group.
The director of the transition team will be Ryan Drajewicz, who is taking a leave of absence from his senior management position at Bridgewater Associates, to help Lamont develop his administration over the next 75 days.
Drajewicz previously worked for former U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd for eight years and lives in Fairfield.
Malloy, who took over eight years ago from a Republican administration, had his commissioners put together a transition document for the next administration. The transition documents will include the priorities for the various departments.
Continuity and change back to top
Lamont said he believes in “continuity” but he also believes in “big change.”
He’s trying to strike a balance between accepting how parts of government are done, at the same time as he wants to shake up other parts.
He said he’s going to bring in folks that he knows through the business world “to bring a really fresh perspective in terms of what we’ve gotta do.” He said he’s going to team those folks up with folks who understand the “inside.”
He said the transition will be “looking at the organization of government and what is the right mix of commissions and commissioners. Not just people, but also structure.”
“I want to make sure there’s continuity,” Lamont said. “I want to make sure all that institutional knowledge is saved.”
He said inside the transition team there will be a budget group and an economic development group.
That in addition to his business advisory council that he put together on the campaign trail.
The 12-member business advisory council will be headed by PepsiCo Chairwoman Indra Nooyi. The group also includes Cindi Bigelow, CEO of Bigelow Tea and Roxanne Coady, CEO of RJ Julia Booksellers, two members of the Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth Commission.
The rest of the council will include Alan Schnitzer of Travelers, David Scheer of Achillion, David Salinas of The District Innovation and Venture Center, Adam Norwitt of Amphenol, Elliot Joseph of Hartford Healthcare, Tony James of Blackstone Group, Rick Hunt a fellow with the Yale Tsai Center, Daniel Ciporin of Canaan Partners, and Frank Borges of Landmark Partners.
The goal of the group is to help recruit new companies to Connecticut.
The transition team does not have a website, but one is expected to be launched soon.
Lamont will not be taking the $150,000 a year salary and it’s unclear how much time he will be spending at the executive residence in Hartford.
“I certainly plan to be at the executive residence a lot,” Lamont said.
He added: “It was pretty nice.”