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Gov. appoints retired AF officer to head workforce agency

Apr 20, 2010 2:52:00 PM - thestate.com
Gov. Mark Sanford has appointed retired Air Force Brigadier Gen. John Finan to become the interim director of the Department of Workforce, which lawmakers recently created from the former Employment Security Commission.

Finan, 67, has served as Chief Financial Officer of the U.S. Air Force and vice president for business and finance at the University of South Carolina from 1995 to 2001. Finan has an Master's in Business Administration from Michigan State University.

Sanford said his goal was to appoint someone to the post with experience leading large institutions who could implement new accountability measures at an agency that allowed an $800 million unemployment surplus to turn into $800 million in federal unemployment loans in a decade.

"When you oversee a budget of that scale you really have to have systems in place," Sanford said of Finan's Air Force experience. "He has a background and training that prepares him for this."

Finan said he does not yet know the extent of the issues at the agency, but that he believed in "management by questioning" and would get into the agency and talk to its employees.