For Immediate Release - January 21, 2015

Deborah Goldberg Takes Office as Treasurer and Receiver General

Promotes fiscal responsibility and economic empowerment in inaugural address

Treasurer Goldberg Swearing in Ceremony

BOSTON – Wednesday, January 21, 2015 – Today Deborah B. Goldberg was sworn in as the 60th Treasurer and Receiver General of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by Governor Charlie Baker. Treasurer Goldberg becomes the first Jewish woman elected to statewide office in Massachusetts.

“I am honored and humbled to serve the Commonwealth,” said Treasurer Goldberg. “I look forward to pursuing our agenda of strengthening fiscal responsibility, launching innovative technology initiatives and advancing economic empowerment for the people of Massachusetts.”

“It was a pleasure to administer the oath of office to the Commonwealth’s next state treasurer,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “I look forward to working with Treasurer Goldberg as we both strive to carry out the charges of our offices and honorably serve the people of Massachusetts.”

A businesswoman, local official and community leader, Goldberg was elected state treasurer in 2014 on a platform to protect taxpayer dollars, bring new levels of transparency to state government and advance policies that break down barriers and create economic empowerment. She is the President of Adoptions with Love, a non-profit adoption agency, serves on the Advisory Board of the Greater Boston Food Bank and has been the Senate President’s appointee to the Commonwealth Covenant Fund in the Treasurer’s Office since its inception.

A graduate of Boston University, Boston College Law School and Harvard Business School, Goldberg grew up in Brookline where she still lives with her husband Michael Winter and their son, Evan and daughter, Meredith.

“I am certain that Deb will bring a spirit of entrepreneurship and integrity to her work as Treasurer, as she has throughout her business and public service careers,” said outgoing Treasurer Steve Grossman.

“I look forward to working with Treasurer Goldberg on the critical fiscal issues facing Massachusetts,” said House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo. “She has proven herself to be a committed public servant and adept business leader and I believe these traits will serve the Commonwealth well as we enter a new legislative session.”

“Congratulations and best of luck to Treasurer Goldberg,” said Senate President Stan Rosenberg. “She has the background, skills, and knowledge to be very successful as our next Treasurer. I look forward to working with her in the years to come.”

“Deb Goldberg is a passionate leader with the background and experience needed to lead the Treasurer’s Office forward,” said Attorney General Martha Coakley. “I wish her much success in tackling the many challenges ahead.”

“I am excited to work with Treasurer Deb Goldberg to expand economic opportunity in Massachusetts,” said Attorney General-elect Maura Healey. “Our offices partner on a wide range of initiatives from improving financial literacy, to investing in public education and combating cybercrime. Deb Goldberg is a good friend and I know her commitment to our state and our families. I really look forward to this partnership.”

“I congratulate Treasurer Goldberg and look forward to working with her to create a more fiscally solid and prosperous Commonwealth,” said Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

Please see below or view the attached document to read Treasurer Goldberg’s remarks as prepared for delivery.

Thank you Governor Baker – I know that you and I will work collaboratively together for the benefit of the people of the Commonwealth.

I also want to thank and welcome Lieutenant Governor Polito, my fellow Constitutional Officers, Members of the Governor’s Council and Cabinet Members, Members of the House of Representatives and Members of the Senate. I’d also like to welcome former Treasurer Tim Cahill and acknowledge that I’ve received greetings from former Treasurer Shannon O’Brien, who is overseas at this time.

And Steve Grossman, thank you for your support, your mentorship and all your help – we know you will continue to do great things and make a real difference in the world.

Above all, I thank you my fellow citizens and my friends – it is truly a privilege to speak before you today in this Chamber.

But before I begin my remarks, I really want to acknowledge my family, my husband, Michael, my two beautiful children, Evan and Meredith, my brother, Josh and his girlfriend, Sarah, my stepdaughters and their husbands and my grandchildren. But in particular I want to thank my parents, Carol and Avram Goldberg, for who you are, and the values you represent and what you have taught me.

In our family we have often talked about the nature of the values we have shared generationally – from the beginning we have believed in and made a commitment to making sure everyone around us had opportunity – opportunity to achieve stability, security and fulfilled lives. These are the values from both sides of my family.

When my mother’s great grandmother opened a little grocery store in the North End of Boston, every friend or relative who arrived had a job and a roof over their heads. Then she and a few of the other ladies in the neighborhood started a home for the elderly – the store became Stop & Shop and the home for the elderly, Hebrew Senior Life. It was about economic security, stability and empowerment.

My Dad’s father, the youngest of 11 from Lawrence graduated number one in his class at Lawrence High School, just like Bioribel, who is here with her family today.

He was the first in his family to go to college and graduated from Harvard in 1911 and Harvard Law School in 1914. He became a public servant right here in the Commonwealth because he believed in service – at the same time at the age of 27 and still a bachelor, he and his best friend, were the founders of Jewish Big Brother Big Sister – the precursor to Big Brother Big Sister.

This passion, this mission that is within me from all of them, and from you, that is why I ran for treasurer. To apply my skills, my experience and my background – to do my part to ensure that both our state and our people have economic stability and security, opportunity for personal empowerment.

When I look at Massachusetts today, I am upbeat and optimistic about our economic prospects. We have the highest bond rating in our history. Businesses are hiring workers and looking for more. Our innovation economy has emerged as the envy of many in life sciences, biotech and clean energy.

Yet, as proud as I am of our accomplishments, I remain keenly aware of the challenges we continue to face.   

The current budget deficit is a case in point. People expect action and rightly so. Across Treasury, we will also do our part – and as your treasurer, I will manage the state’s finances with the highest degree of professionalism and fiscal responsibility.  

Rating agencies look to see how states handle challenging times. Therefore this budget crisis is also an opportunity to both reaffirm and establish critical fiscal policies. Now is not the time to raid the rainy day fund. I share Governor Baker’s commitment to fiscal responsibility and we look forward to working together, with the Legislature, to increase our rainy day fund significantly over the next four years.

We should also consider creating new tools that will:

• Provide independent, non-partisan analysis of how potential legislation will affect state spending.

• Produce multi-year budget forecasts to project revenue and spending beyond a single year.

• Plan and anticipate the challenges of tomorrow based upon multiple economic scenarios.

Sound planning is critical in order to invest in our schools, our people and our infrastructure – the building blocks of long-term, sustainable economic growth.  

As someone who served on the local level as a Selectman, I know how important it is for state services to be responsive to local needs. We will take a customer service approach to cities and towns. We will streamline and coordinate services and operations that support our municipalities in order that they can achieve their educational, economic and fiscal goals.

Whether building a new school, providing funds for clean water infrastructure, or growing local community assets by pooling resources and investing at the Massachusetts Municipal Depository Trust, I understand that the Treasurer works for the people and that means the people in every community.

As the world is adapting to the innovative technology of the 21st century, government cannot lag behind.

Whether it comes to questions about personal finances or our state budget – citizens deserve straightforward, easy to find answers. And we will use modern, state-of-the-art technology to make that happen. For example, at the Lottery, which is facing an increasingly competitive marketplace, I am excited to announce that in the coming week, we will be putting out to bid the replacement of its outdated and inefficient operating system and terminal hardware. This is a major IT infrastructure upgrade that is long overdue!

You know those big terminals, the blue boxes that print the tickets you see everywhere – they are almost two decades old! They are going! This new system will increase our capacity to be innovative and savvy.

To strategically plan and implement our robust IT agenda, we will immediately elevate the role of Chief Information Officer to the Treasurer’s senior staff. I have tasked our CIO with the responsibility of breaking down silos within our offices and agencies and developing a forward-looking agenda that delivers exemplary service to our colleagues, citizens and communities.

Today in Massachusetts, I also remain deeply aware that too many families are faced with the reality of a tough economy.

Government alone cannot address every problem in our society, nor should it. If income inequality is our critical challenge, then empowerment must be our shared solution. And so we must do more to give people the financial skills they need to get ahead. As treasurer, I will urge the business community to join us in this fight and I am confident they will!

In the generations my family ran Stop & Shop, growing it into a $1.2 billion New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) company with 50,000 employees, economic empowerment was the core value of our business. I learned from an early age that when you invest in people, you empower people to invest in themselves!

That is why today we are restructuring the Treasury and launching a new Office of Economic Empowerment. Directed by a deputy treasurer, the office will oversee a broad range of initiatives to enhance economic stability and economic security.

First, we will build a robust, statewide financial literacy program, providing everyone from children to seniors with the tools they need to make informed financial decisions.

Working with schools, teachers and communities we will enhance basic mathematics instruction, leading to greater understanding of financial issues.

We will provide high school students with the skills to budget their money and track their spending, and help seniors avoid the dangerous fraudulent financial schemes that threaten to destroy their retirement savings.

Second, we will develop innovative solutions to make college more affordable and alleviate the rising burden of student debt.

By expanding dual enrollment programs that allow high school students to take college-level courses –

By increasing tuition and loan-repayment scholarships in STEM-related fields –

And by creating a new college savings plan for the kids who need it most, we will work with kindergartners and their parents to save years ahead of time.

Third, wage equality. Today, women in Massachusetts earn just 82 cents on the dollar. African-American women – 61. And Latina women – 50.  [1]

Pay equity is not a partisan issue, nor solely a women’s issue. It is a family issue! And it affects the economic health and well-being of our entire state!

Beginning today, Human Resources at Treasury will build upon Treasurer Grossman’s initiatives and lead the Commonwealth by putting a clear, unambiguous focus on pay equity in every hiring decision and salary offer and continue to hire a diverse workforce.

By auditing our pay structure, we will show how it’s done. We will also partner with private employers, providing them with the tools and resources they need to achieve pay equity. And we will teach employees how to understand and achieve pay equity, empowering them to help break down cultural and institutionalized barriers for themselves.

Since its founding, Massachusetts has been home to an innovative and entrepreneurial spirit. That spirit was alive and well in a little family grocery store in the North End of Boston in 1892 and continues to flourish right here today in this Chamber and across our great state.

It is this spirit, coupled with the wisdom and values instilled in me which puts me before you today to pledge my commitment – my commitment to serve and protect the financial security and prosperity of people from all walks of life – regardless of where they live, what they look like or how much money they have.

I am humbled by the trust you have placed in me as we embark on this journey together.

Thank you. God bless you. And may God bless the Commonwealth of Massachusetts!

 


[1] For specific Massachusetts data see “Fact Sheet: Massachusetts Women and the Wage Gap,” National Partnership for Women and Families (October 2014): 1; “Wage Gap for African American Women – State Rankings,” National Women’s Law Center (October 2014): 2; and “Fact Sheet: Latinas and the Wage Gap,” National Partnership for Women and Families (April 2014): 2.

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