Group To Focus on Bringing Fresh Ideas to State Government for Restoring Integrity, Increasing Efficiency, and Expanding Economic Opportunity
Flourtown, PA – Treasurer-Elect Joe Torsella today announced the formation of a national bipartisan transition task force to help bring integrity and innovation to the Pennsylvania Treasury Department. The committee includes Delaware Governor and former Delaware State Treasurer Jack Markell, former Republican U.S. Senator and banking leader Peter Fitzgerald from Illinois, retired Vanguard founder Jack Bogle, former White House chief ethics counsel Richard Painter, and former Nevada Treasurer Kate Marshall, who also is a past President of the National Association of State Treasurers.
“These are national and state leaders in government reform, public integrity, finance, and financial empowerment. I am honored that they have agreed to lend their expertise and experience to me, to the Treasury Department, and to the Commonwealth for this transition,” said Torsella. “In bringing fresh and outside perspectives, this group will help me to establish the very highest standards of ethics, accountability and transparency in this office, to serve as an independent and effective fiscal watchdog over taxpayer dollars, and to use the tools of this office to make a real difference in the economic futures of all Pennsylvanians.”
Recognizing that ethical governing must start on Day One, no member of the Torsella task force is a registered state lobbyist or a third-party marketer. “Under my leadership, Treasury is going to be operated as an open book, with an open door, with no favoritism,” said Torsella. “In bringing together our task force, we are seeking input from Republicans and Democrats to make sure that we’re setting up our office to be an independent fiscal watchdog for all taxpayers.”
More members will be added in the coming days. To date, members include:
Hon. Peter Fitzgerald
Hon. Jack Markell
Hon. Kate Marshall
Hon. Cherelle Parker
Hon. Jason Salus
Hon. John Weinstein
Michael Barr is the Roy F. and Jean Humphrey Proffitt Professor of Law at the University of Michigan. As the former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Dept. in Washington, Barr was an architect of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
John Bogle founded The Vanguard Group, Inc., the largest mutual fund organization in the world, and is president of the Bogle Financial Markets Research Center. Creator of the first index fund, he has received countless lifetime achievement and business leadership awards and is lauded as a revolutionary investor, advocate for investors, and proponent of low-cost passive investing.
Dan Booker is a partner in Reed Smith in Pittsburgh. He has served as counsel in an array of corporate governance and commercial matters, and in class actions, arbitrations or lawsuits involving acquisition agreements, tender offers, supply contracts, false advertising, securities fraud, employment discrimination, public finance, consumer banking, health insurance, state insurance regulation and federal research grants.
As an advocate of social and economic equality, Esther Bush is nationally recognized as a strong and vocal advocate for economic and social equality initiatives that benefit African Americans. As President of the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, the organization has become a top performing affiliate for two consecutive rating periods, receiving a 5 out of 5 rating from the National Urban League.
Peter Fitzgerald is a former U.S. Senator from Illinois. A Republican, he served from 1999 to 2005. Known as a maverick for his willingness to break party lines, he retired from politics and founded Chain Bridge Bank in 2007, a boutique commercial bank based in McLean, VA. His family has been continuously involved in commercial banking since the mid-1940s.
Mark Foley (Counsel to the Transition Task Force) is a partner at Philadelphia firm Drinker Biddle & Reath, where his practice focuses on representing management in employment and labor matters and is often called upon by clients to act as lead trial and appellate counsel in state and federal courts. From 1992 to 1995, Foley served in the City of Philadelphia Law Department under former Mayor Edward G. Rendell.
Former banking and corporate executive Rosemarie Greco brings with her decades of financial leadership experience. After beginning her career in the financial services industry as a bank-branch secretary, she ultimately rose to the distinction of being recognized as the highest ranking woman in banking in the United States. She served as a senior executive at the former Fidelity Bank before joining CoreStates, where she served as CEO and President of CoreStates Bank and as President of CoreStates Financial Corp, its parent corporation.
David Gash is the current President of the Harrisburg Region Central Labor Council and the 3rd Vice President of the Harrisburg NAACP. He was the Staff Representative for AFSCME District Council 90 where he negotiated contracts, handled grievances, & provided leadership to members within various locals, including AFSCME Local 972.
Arlin Green brings decades of experience in investment, portfolio management, operations and financial services. He previously served as the president of Firstrust Bank, a $2.5 billion bank based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His career has encompassed a successful track record investing over $150 million in more than 80 properties and venture funds.
Public finance veteran Rasheia Johnson serves as the Treasurer of the City of Philadelphia. She has also served as an investment banker, financial advisor, and issuer. Her past experience includes work in the municipal finance department at Loop Capital Markets, Public Financial Management, and the City of Philadelphia as assistant to the director of finance for debt management.
Hon. Jack Markell, Governor of Delaware, has been a champion for efficiency, innovation, and opportunity in state government. He earlier served three terms as State Treasurer of Delaware, where he created the Delaware Financial Literacy Institute and its signature program, the Delaware Money School. Prior to his government service, he was a private sector executive at Nextel, and holds an MBA from the University of Chicago.
Kate Marshall is a former Nevada State Treasurer and former President of the National Association of State Treasurers. As Treasurer, she established the first statewide universal college savings accounts program in the country. The Nevada College Kick Start Program opened 529 college savings accounts with an initial deposit of $50 for Nevada public school kindergarten students at no cost to taxpayers.
Jeremy Nowak is the chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia’s board of directors and has been a director since January 2008. He has also served on the Federal Reserve’s Consumer Advisory Council. He is a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and a Nonresident Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Urban Research. Nowak served as president of the William Penn Foundation from 2011-2012.
Richard Painter, a professor at the University of Minnesota Law School and the chief ethics lawyer in the White House from 2005 to 2007, is widely recognized as an expert on government ethics. He was associate counsel to the President in the White House Counsel’s office, serving as the chief ethics lawyer for the President, White House employees, and senior nominees to Senate-confirmed positions in the Executive Branch. He is an advisor for the new ALI Principles of Government Ethics and author of “Getting the Government America Deserves: How Ethics Reform Can Make a Difference.”
Hon. Cherelle Parker is a member of Philadelphia City Council, where she chairs the Philadelphia Task Force on Retirement Security, which will recommend policy solutions to address the city’s burgeoning retirement crisis. Before her election to City Council, Parker served for 10 years as a State Representative. During her tenure in the PA House, she served on the House Appropriations Committee, as well as the Labor and Industry, Professional Licensure, Rules, and Transportation committees. She also served as Chair of the Philadelphia Delegation.
Derrick Roman is a partner with the international professional services firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC). As a partner in PwC’s Risk Assurance services practice, Roman specialize in risk management, internal control, internal audit, compliance and corporate governance matters. Roman leads the Detroit branch of the company’s youth financial literacy program and has a lifelong interest in financial education as a tool for youth empowerment.
The Treasurer of Montgomery County, PA, Jason Salus, led the first successful county-wide effort in Pennsylvania to move the majority of public pension investment to low-cost index funds, saving county taxpayers over $1 million a year. Salus has built a strong, proven record of independence, leadership, innovation and public service.
Barry Schoch served as Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Transportation from 2011 to 2015. Appointed by former Governor Tom Corbett, he was integral to the successful passing of the State Transportation Funding Bill (Act 89) in 2013. While at the helm of PennDOT, he led the enhancement of the ePermitting System, greatly improving the system’s efficiency, and was key to the launch of PennDOT’s Next Generation program, aimed at evaluating and modernizing the Department’s internal business practices.
Rob Shepardson is a marketing strategist, who, in April 2014, was named by Barack Obama to the President’s Council on Fi41tness, Sports and Nutrition (PCFSN). Shepardson is a co-founder and partner of SS+K, a New York-based advertising agency. Shepardson was instrumental in the launch of LIVESTRONG, the foundation that inspired millions of people to take a stronger stance against cancer. Shepardson also led the SS+K team that helped create and launch “Let’s Move,” First Lady Michelle Obama’s program to counter childhood obesity.
Joan Walker is the former executive vice president for Corporate Relations at Allstate Insurance. Walker was a member of the company’s Senior Leadership Team and served as Allstate’s chief communication officer. She also served as the company’s interim chief marketing officer from 2007 to 2009. Walker began her career with 14 years of service in New Jersey state government, so brings comprehensive knowledge of both government and private sector leadership.
John Weinstein has served as the elected Allegheny County Treasurer since 1999, and has been re-elected countywide to four consecutive terms. Weinstein also serves as the President of the Retirement Board of Allegheny County and oversees the pension investment portfolio of nearly $800 million. Weinstein has become a leader in green initiatives, implementing e-tax billing for Real Estate and broad e-pay initiatives.
Nancy Winkler is the former Treasurer of the City of Philadelphia and oversaw the City’s $8.5 billion debt portfolio, including general obligation, service agreement, and revenue bonds, the Philadelphia Airport, City of Philadelphia Water department, the Philadelphia Gas Works, and other City-related agencies. Prior to joining the City, she was a Managing Director at the PFM Group, heading the firm’s New York office for 13 years.
Accountant Larry Wittig is chair of the Pennsylvania State Board of Education. He previously served as a member of Governor Ridge’s Commission on Academic Standards. Wittig, a Certified Public Accountant, serves as senior partner at Wittig CPAs. He is also a member of the Schuylkill Community Education Council and the Luzerne-Schuylkill Workforce Investment Board.
About Treasurer-elect Joe Torsella
Pennsylvania Treasurer-elect Joe Torsella has spent his life in public service making public institutions more efficient, more transparent, and more innovative. As Ambassador to the United Nations for UN Management and Reform from 2011 to 2014, Torsella was the architect and chief public spokesperson for the U.S.-led reform of the UN’s $36 billion system. As Deputy Mayor of Philadelphia, Torsella helped Ed Rendell close a $1.25 billion deficit. Torsella was the founding CEO of the National Constitution Center, helping it go from virtual bankruptcy to national treasure. A former Rhodes Scholar and a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Torsella has served on several corporate boards, led Philadelphia’s bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics, and was a Distinguished Visiting Fellow in Public Policy at Drexel University in 2014 and 2015.
About Pennsylvania Treasury
The Pennsylvania Treasury is an independent department of state government led by the state treasurer, who is elected every four years. The department’s primary duty is to safeguard and manage the state’s public funds. It invests state money to generate income on behalf of the citizens of Pennsylvania, reviews and processes payments for state government agencies, and serves as custodian of more than $100 billion in state funds. Key Treasury programs include Unclaimed Property, PA 529 College Savings Program and the Board of Finance and Revenue. To learn more visit patreasury.gov.