BREAKING: FORMER CITIGROUP EXEC NAMED STATE REVENUE COMMISSIONER
STATE HOUSE, BOSTON, MARCH 29, 2016....The Baker administration is putting a former Citigroup executive and former Republican candidate for treasurer in charge of the Department of Revenue.
Mike Heffernan, who was outpolled in 2014 by Treasurer Deborah Goldberg and then served on Gov. Charlie Baker's transition team, is set to succeed Mark Nunnelly as revenue commissioner on May 2.
As previously announced, Nunnelly is stepping down April 4 to take the state's top information technology post. The job of revenue chief is changing hands mid-tax season and Kevin Brown, general counsel at the DOR, will serve as acting commissioner until Heffernan starts.
According to the Baker administration, Heffernan spent nearly two decades at Citigroup, working in its markets and banking division and overseeing seven regional institutional equities offices. He co-founded the tech startup Mobiquity in 2011, and previously worked at Salomon Brothers, NatWest Markets and EF Hutton & Co.
The DOR oversees tax compliance, child support and municipal finance.
"The Department of Revenue's daily functions and timely projections are essential to the operation of state government," Administration and Finance Secretary Kristen Lepore, who appointed Heffernan and oversees the DOR, said in a statement. "Mike's extensive finance experience and entrepreneurial background will be critical to leading an agency with crucial responsibilities to the Commonwealth and the customers who pay taxes here."
Heffernan serves on the MBTA Retirement Board and the Pension Reserves Investment Management Board, posts he was named to last year by Gov. Baker. He plans to continue on those boards while also serving as revenue commissioner, according to a Baker administration official.
In his 2014 race, Heffernan drew nearly 41 percent of the vote but was handily defeated by Goldberg, who was favored by 55 percent of voters.According to state data, Goldberg reported campaign expenditures of $2.4 million in that race, compared to $430,604 by Heffernan.
As a candidate, Heffernan was endorsed by former Gov. William Weld and argued against repealing the state's casino law, touting the expectation of jobs, economic development and new state revenues. He also called for reducing state debt, which he described as the "highest in the nation."
A native of Southborough, Heffernan graduated from Algonquin Regional High School. He earned a bachelor's degree in economics at Georgetown University, a master's in business administration from New York University, and a master's in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School. He and his wife, Peggy, have three teenage children and live in Wellesley.