Vermont State Treasurer Jeb Spaulding as Secretary of Administration was the most surprising name among the small group of senior appointments announced by Governor-elect Peter Shumlin this afternoon at his transition office in Montpelier. The four others named were Bill Lofy as chief of staff, Alexandra MacLean as Secretary of Civil and Military Affairs, Beth Robinson as counsel and Susan Bartlett as special adviser. See biographies below.
While Spaulding was an early supporter of Shumlin’s and was often cited as a possible senior member of the governor-elect’s staff, there had been no acknowledgement by Spaulding that he was being considered. Spaulding stated at the press conference that he was content to keep his current job, but that when the governor-elect asked him to serve that that is what he felt he should do.
Lofy was previously named as one of the senior members of Shumlin’s transition team. He formerly had worked for US Senator Paul Wellstone of Wisconsin. Lofy has held important positions in the national Democratic Party.
Pictured: Beth Robinson, Bill Lofy, Governor-elect Shumlin, Susan Bartlett and Alexandra MacLean. Jeb Spaulding is behind Shumin. Photo: Vermont Business Magazine
MacLean was Shumlin’s popular campaign manager and spokesperson and previously worked for him in his role as president pro tem of the Senate.
Beth Robinson is a partner in the Middlebury and Burlington law firm of Langrock Sperry & Wool LLP. She was one of the leaders of Vermont Freedom to Marry, a group that successfully advocated for Vermont's same-sex marriage law, which passed in 2009.
Susan Barlett, a long serving member of the state Senate from Lamoille County, was one of Shumlin’s opponents in the Democratic primary. Despite that, she campaigned hard for Shumlin in the general election against Lieutenant Governor Brian Dubie. Bartlett is frequently praised for her no nonsense approach to budgetary matters.
Shumlin said he probably would not name any more staff before Thanksgiving, but did not entirely rule it out either.
Spaulding was the highest vote getter in any race of the just concluded elections, receiving more than 90 percent of the vote. He was first elected in 2002, the same year Governor Douglas first won. Once Shumlin is sworn in Spaulding will officially step down, thus allowing Shumlin to appoint a new treasurer. Speculation on who would fill that position began immediately.
Biographies of Senior Appointments
Jeb Spaulding has served as Vermont’s State Treasurer since 2003 and is currently immediate past president of the National Association of State Treasures. His Office is responsible for the State’s cash, debt, and investment management. During his tenure as Treasurer, Vermont regained a triple-A bond rating for the first time since the 1970s and now has the most favorable credit rating of all New England states. Spaulding has been tapped by the Vermont Legislature on multiple occasions to develop solutions to ongoing fiscal challenges, such as escalating pension costs and funding for deteriorating roads and bridges. As State Treasurer, he serves on the boards of the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, the Vermont Economic Development Authority, the Vermont Housing Finance Agency, the Vermont Municipal Bond Bank, and several other state-sponsored entities. Prior to being elected State Treasurer, Spaulding served eight terms in the Vermont State Senate from 1985-2000, where he served as chair of the Appropriations, Education, and Joint Fiscal Committees. Spaulding was a founder and General Manager of WNCS-FM in Montpelier and a partner in Precision Media, Inc. He has also served as the Director of the Vermont Academy of Science and Technology at Vermont Technical College, an adjunct instructor at Norwich University, and as Director of Adult and Technical Education at the Vermont Department of Education. Treasurer Spaulding earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Education from the University of Vermont.
Bill Lofy has 16 years of experience managing political and policy initiatives at the state, national, and international levels. In addition to serving for seven years as a senior advisor to Senator Paul Wellstone of Minnesota and advisor to the Vermont legislative leadership in 2006-2007, he holds a master’s degree in public affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. For the past three years, Lofy has served as Deputy Political Director for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, where his responsibilities included managing the transition for Senator Al Franken. Lofy is the author of an acclaimed biography of Wellstone and co-author of two campaign management books. A former Peace Corps Volunteer in the Cape Verde Islands in West Africa, Lofy also served as a development worker in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Alexandra MacLean is a native Vermonter who most recently served as Governor-elect Shumlin’s campaign manager. In this role she successfully helped Governor-elect Shumlin win both the primary and the general election to become Vermont’s next governor. Prior to the campaign, Alex served as Shumlin’s aide in the Senate President Pro Tem’s office. In addition to serving for three years in these roles, she holds a master’s degree in history from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Alex grew up in the North East Kingdom and continues to reside there today.
Beth Robinson is a partner at the Middlebury and Burlington law firm of Langrock Sperry & Wool, LLP, where she has practiced since 1993. Her work spans a broad range of areas from groundbreaking constitutional litigation to representing claimants in workers’ compensation cases. She has been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America for her work. Beth may be best known for her role in Vermont’s freedom to marry movement. She served as co-counsel to the plaintiffs in Baker v. State, Vermont’s landmark case involving the constitutional rights of same-sex couples, helped lead the lobbying effort which led to the passage of Vermont’s civil union law in 2000, and helped lead the effort in 2009 that culminated in the Legislature’s passage of a bill extending the legal right to marry to same-sex couples. The Burlington Free Press named her Vermonter of the Year in 2009 in recognition of her efforts. Beth graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College in 1986 and from the University of Chicago Law School, Order of the Coif, in 1989.Susan Bartlett was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for Governor in 2010. She was a small business owner in Stowe and in 1992 was elected as the first woman and first Democrat to represent Lamoille County in the Vermont Senate. She has served on the Appropriations Committee since 1994 and has been its Chair since 2001. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Vermont and a Master’s degree in educational administration from Johnson State College.
Source: Vermont Business Magazine. 11.15.2010. Jeb Spaulding photo State of Vermont. Biographies supplied by Shumlin’s office.