For Immediate Release - January 17, 2014

GOVERNOR PATRICK APPOINTS RACHEL KAPRIELIAN AS SECRETARY OF LABOR AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Commends Secretary Goldstein for strong leadership and results throughout her tenure

Swear-in of Rachel Kaprielian
Governor Patrick swears-in Rachel Kaprielian as the new Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development in the State House Library.(Photo: Spencer Crispino / Governor's Office)

BOSTON – Friday, January 17, 2014 – Governor Deval Patrick will today appoint Rachel Kaprielian, the current Registrar of the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV), as Secretary of the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD). Secretary Joanne F. Goldstein is departing the Administration to accept a job at Northeastern University as an Associate Vice President. The Governor will join Secretary Goldstein and Registrar Kaprielian for the announcement at noon today in Doric Hall at the Massachusetts State House.

Kaprielian brings to her new position the expertise and experience needed to serve the Commonwealth’s workers, job seekers and employers. As Registrar and State Representative, Kaprielian has advocated for smart and consumer-friendly policies, innovative job training initiatives, comprehensive pension reform, municipal and regional organizational reforms, aggressive anti-tobacco policies and Early Intervention programs for at-risk children. As Secretary, she will oversee the Commonwealth’s five labor and workforce agencies: the Departments of Unemployment Assistance, Career Services, Labor Standards, Industrial Accidents, and Labor Relations as well as the quasi-public agency Commonwealth Corporation.

“I sincerely thank Joanne for her four years of dedication and commitment to our workers, job seekers and employers through some of the Commonwealth’s most challenging economic times,” said Governor Patrick. “I am thrilled that Rachel has agreed to take on this new role, and I am confident that she is prepared to continue the difficult work of getting our residents back to work, and preparing both our workers and employers for the jobs of the 21st century economy.”

“I am grateful for this opportunity to continue to serve the public by working towards job creation and economic growth that will benefit Massachusetts residents and businesses. I share Governor Patrick’s commitment to the state’s continuing economic recovery by ensuring that the skills of the Commonwealth’s workforce meet the continuously evolving needs of our employers,” said Kaprielian.

“It has been an honor and privilege to serve the Governor and the Commonwealth for the past four years," said Secretary Goldstein. "I am proud of our successes on behalf of working families. I want to thank my staff and team for their dedication, hard work and commitment to their constituencies. I look forward to spending time with my family and then moving forward with this exciting professional opportunity. I am forever grateful to the Governor for the opportunity I had to contribute to the economic and social wellbeing of the people of Massachusetts.”

Governor Patrick commends Secretary Goldstein for her leadership in addressing the workforce needs of businesses, providing both labor protections and safe working conditions for workers, and advocating for fair wages across the Commonwealth. Goldstein was appointed as Secretary by Governor Patrick in January 2010. Secretary Goldstein served as chair of the Governor’s Joint Task Force on the Underground Economy and Employee Misclassification where she oversaw the recovery of nearly $39 million owed to the Commonwealth. She also chaired the Municipal Unemployment Insurance (UI) Task Force, which recommended changes for the Unemployment Insurance system to better serve both municipalities and public employees. Goldstein oversaw the transformation of the Workforce Training Fund, which annually distributes up to $21 million to employers so that they can upgrade their workers’ skills, grow jobs and remain regionally and nationally competitive. Over the past several months, Secretary Goldstein has also overseen the launch of UI Online, a modern, web-based system that replaces Massachusetts’ outdated and fragmented UI computer system.

Secretary Goldstein has spent her entire career as a labor attorney and dedicated public servant. She has been an advocate and voice for working families, and has successfully balanced the economic concerns of business with the interests of working people.

Governor Patrick appointed Rachel Kaprielian as Registrar of the RMV in 2008. During her tenure, Kaprielian has overseen the expansion of the Registry's online branch at www.mass.gov/rmv and implemented an innovative customer service plan to minimize the impact on customer traffic by working with sister transportation agencies, municipalities and local delegations to build new branches in rent-free public spaces. Prior to serving as Registrar, Kaprielian represented Watertown and parts of Cambridge for 14 years as a state representative.

Throughout her career, Kaprielian has been best known for her keen dedication to constituent services and a strong commitment to tackling quality of life issues for all people who reside in the Commonwealth.  Among her many legislative accomplishments, Kaprielian spearheaded reform efforts which enabled cities and towns to join the state's Group Insurance commission (GIC) to significantly ease the burden of spiraling health insurance costs for all the 351 communities in the state. Her honors and recognitions have included Legislator of the Year from the March of Dimes for her work with special education initiatives; the Legislative Leadership Award from Massachusetts Public Health Association for her tireless public health efforts; her advocacy for Home and Health Care Association of MA, leadership with The Tobacco Free Mass Coalition; her collaboration with the MA Public Health Association and her partnership with the Metropolitan Area Planning Council which named her Legislator of the Year.

Kaprielian earned her Bachelor's Degree from the College of Holy Cross. An attorney, she holds a J.D from Suffolk University Law School as well as a Master's Degree in Public Administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Governor Patrick created the Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development as a cabinet-level position in 2007 in order to best serve the Commonwealth’s job seekers, apprentices, union members, claimants, employers, attorneys and researchers across the Commonwealth.

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