Lamont Makes His First Organizational Change

By Mark Pazniokas, Ctmirrororg | New Haven Register (New Haven, CT), December 15, 2018 | Go to article overview

Lamont Makes His First Organizational Change


Mark Pazniokas, Ctmirrororg, New Haven Register (New Haven, CT)


Gov.-elect Ned Lamont shared his first plans for restructuring state government Friday, announcing a new post of chief operating officer — a position recommended and never implemented decades ago in Connecticut, while becoming increasingly common in governors’ offices across the U.S.

While some governors have looked to corporate executives and state agency heads for COOs, Lamont’s choice is Paul Mounds, who has held a number of policy and communications jobs in state and federal government, as well as special projects that put him in touch with a variety of state agencies.

Chief operating officers in other states typically allow a governor’s chief of staff to be more strategic, while fostering close cooperation between agencies that often operate as independent silos. Mounds will report to Lamont’s chief of staff, Ryan Drajewicz.

“This decision comes after a lot of thought,” Lamont said. “Ryan and I have had a chance to talk to many of the commissioners, deputies and to those that deal with our different departments across the state.”

Lamont said the new post will not require additional funding, just a reapportionment of current funding.

“We’ve really utilized this time during the transition to really step back and rethink the organizational design for state government,” said Drajewicz, who is joining the new administration after serving as an executive at the hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates.

Mounds, 33, now the vice president of policy and communications for the Connecticut Health Foundation, was an aide to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy for five years, leaving the administration in late 2016 as the director of policy and government affairs. He also worked on the staffs of U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal and U.S. Rep. John B. Larson.

“I very much understand the commitment of our agencies and our workforce to bring about change,” Mounds said. …

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