Press Release

Press Release Department of Unemployment Assistance Announces Leadership Transition

DUA Director Jeffers to Lead UI Online Transformation Project; New Interim Director Announced
For immediate release:
4/28/2022
  • Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development

Media Contact for Department of Unemployment Assistance Announces Leadership Transition

Michele Campbell, Director of Communications

Boston, MAThe Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development today announced leadership changes at the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA). DUA Director Rick Jeffers will transition to a newly-created role, Executive Sponsor of UI Transformation, where he will lead the Department’s new Employment and Modernization Transformation project, which will improve the online experience for DUA clients, with a focus on accessibility, usability, efficiency, and accuracy. Connie Carter, who brings 47 years of state and federal experience with UI systems, will serve as Interim Director of DUA.

“The DUA team worked tirelessly and resiliently during the pandemic to provide some $33 billion in benefits to Massachusetts constituents, using and enhancing the existing system to its limits, and developing a new system to manage federal PUA on behalf of countless individuals," said Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta. "We now have an opportunity to look ahead and plan for a successful transition to a new Administration which will be led by Connie, as well as update our antiquated UI system, a massive undertaking called the Employment and Modernization Transformation Project  that will be led by Rick. I want to thank Rick for his continued expertise in the many facets of DUA and acknowledge that he will be a tremendous asset as we undertake this monumental EMT project. In their new roles, both Rick and Connie will inspire positive changes that improve and enhance the DUA experience for the Commonwealth’s constituents.”  

Jeffers has committed his career to DUA since 1999 and most recently led the DUA team through its unprecedented efforts during the pandemic, which included scaling up the call center and other functions to respond to the surge of unemployment claims and to provide constituent support; launching an online, mobile-friendly, unemployment benefits application in multiple languages; and standing up a system for accepting applications and administering payments under an entirely new program, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) within a month of the effective date of the CARES Act. He was also instrumental in leading the process to select a vendor for the EMT project, and brings in-depth knowledge of DUA’s systems, policies, and needs brought to light by the pandemic to his new role.

Carter is an unemployment insurance subject matter expert with 47 years of UI system experience. She has worked extensively with both federal and state legislation and advised legislators on current and proposed UI policies. After completion and successful implementation of the Benefit Modernization Project (SCUBI) in South Carolina, Carter was hired with On Point Technologies as a subject matter expert, where she worked with a number of states.   

Jeffers and the DUA team will assist Carter in this transition, which will be effective Tuesday, May 31, 2022.

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Media Contact for Department of Unemployment Assistance Announces Leadership Transition

Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development  

EOLWD manages the Commonwealth’s workforce development and labor departments to ensure that workers, employers, and the unemployed have the tools and training needed to succeed in the Massachusetts economy.
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