Democrat for Delaware Auditor of Accounts
Each candidate was asked to respond to three questions.
1. What are the top issues you will address in your campaign and what are your plans for moving those issues forward?
The job of the State Auditor is to insure that your tax dollars are being spent in accordance with the budget passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor. It is the Auditor’s job to insure that the state’s financial statements are properly reviewed to give confidence to the people of Delaware and to enable the state to affordably finance our infrastructure – roads, schools, and bridges.
In addition to the primary function of financial audits, I will work, using my experience as a financial and operations management professional, to look for fraud, waste, and abuse, and to make recommendations for state agencies to operate more efficiently and effectively. We can save money by working smarter. I will also hold public meetings to make sure that the public can see how their tax dollars are being spent.
Independence is also a key issue in this campaign. The State Auditor cannot be effective or even be able to fulfill the constitutionally mandated duties of this office if they are not independent of the heads of agencies and branches of government they are required to audit.
We must have an Auditor who has the experience, qualifications, independence, and commitment to transparency to fulfill the duties of the office.
2. What makes you uniquely qualified for the political office you seek?
I am the only candidate with the education, experience, and qualifications in accounting and auditing, in state government, and in accounting, operations, and technology management.
I have experience in industry, government and non-profit accounting. I am an accountant and have worked as an auditor, financial controller, and chief financial officer for small, medium, and large organizations for over 30 years. I have already managed a large staff of accounting, finance, and information technology professionals for a $6 billion company. (Delaware’s state budget is $4.25 billion). I have experience in auditing and implementing internal controls, a skill necessary to understand the functions and to be effective as an auditor.
I also served as a State Legislator for 3 terms in the Delaware General Assembly and served on the Joint Capital Budget Committee. I understand the structure and the content of the state budget.
Finally, and perhaps even most important, the State Auditor must be independent in fact and in appearance to fulfill the duties of the office. This is critical for the public to have confidence in the integrity of the state’s finances. I am the only candidate who has not sought or accepted endorsements or campaign contributions from Elected Officials or Agency Heads. I will not be compromised. Any candidate who claims that they can take this support and money and be independent - after they are elected - is NOT being honest. Governor Carney has stated that he will not get involved in this race because he is head of the Executive Branch and his branch is audited by the State Auditor and to do so would be a conflict of interest. Accounting professionals have reached the same conclusion. Independence is an absolute, unquestionable, unwavering requirement of this office and I am the only candidate who has remained independent in this race.
This office has been run by a non-accountant for almost 30 years and we have not gotten the level of service the public deserves. We can ill afford to make that mistake again.
3. What community groups are you involved with and in what capacity?
I currently volunteer for several non-profit organizations in the city of Wilmington and in Newark. I do not serve on the boards of these organizations. I have previously served as an officer and board member of several other non-profit organizations and served many years as a member of the Delaware Wing Civil Air Patrol. I also previously served as a board member for the Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility. I have been asked to serve on other boards but have declined since I firmly believe that serving on the board of any organization that receives funding from the State of Delaware is a clear conflict of interest. No candidate for the office of Auditor of Accounts should serve on the board of an organization receiving funds from the state.
Profession/employment: Accountant / Auditing Internal Controls Expert / Chief Financial Officer
# of years employed: 35 years
Education: Concord High School, University of Delaware (B.S. Accounting & Financial Management), University of Pennsylvania – The Wharton School & School of Engineering & Applied Science (Master’s in Technology Management)
Political experience: State Representative (10th District) for 3 terms. Served on the Revenue & Finance Committee, the Economic Development, Banking, Insurance, & Commerce Committee, and the Joint Capital Infrastructure Budget Committee.