Covering Frankfort

Nov 19, 2012 11:58 AM

Beshear Names Driskell As State Budget Director

Governor Steve Beshear on Monday announced longtime budget and policy expert Jane Driskell will join his administration as State Budget Director in January. Secretary of the Governor's Executive Cabinet Mary Lassiter has held both positions since September 2009.

"Jane's vast experience in handling financial management issues will truly benefit this administration as we implement current and draft future budget plans," Gov. Beshear said. "Budget director is one of the most important positions of any administration, especially during the difficult financial times we have faced. I appreciate the wisdom and counsel of Mary Lassiter over the years in this position, and I look forward to Jane stepping in and continuing our expertise in the budget office."

With 27 years of experience in government, Driskell will manage the day-to-day activities of the budget office and oversee the formulation and execution of the Governor's budget.

Driskell began her career in state government in 1985 as a policy and budget analyst in the Governor's Office for Policy and Management. She has held numerous executive management positions in Louisville and Lexington governments, including deputy mayor, chief financial officer, budget director and commissioner of finance. Driskell also served as an elected trustee for the Kentucky Retirement Systems.

"It's an honor and a privilege for me to join the Beshear administration at such a critical time for Kentucky as we continue to recover from the recession," Driskell said. "Gov. Beshear and Secretary Lassiter have successfully dealt with very tough spending plans over the last several years, and I look forward to working with them in this very vital role."

Driskell will replace Secretary Lassiter, who was appointed by Gov. Beshear as budget director at the start of his administration in 2007.

"As budget director, I can attest that Jane will bring the needed skills and expertise to this position, along with a wealth of knowledge about how government must operate," said Secretary Lassiter, who was appointed secretary of the cabinet in September 2009. "As the needs of Kentucky grow, I look forward to focusing more attention on Gov. Beshear's policy agenda and my role of managing state government and its many responsibilities and services to the people of Kentucky."

Driskell currently serves as Commissioner of Finance for Lexington Fayette Urban County Government, in the office of Mayor Jim Gray.

"Jane's strong management skills and expertise have helped us take significant steps toward getting our city's financial house in order," Mayor Gray said. "Although we'll miss her, we're honored the Governor invited her to join his team. She's the best."

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