December 13, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today named Jack Lavin as his Chief of Staff. Lavin previously served as the state's Chief Operating Officer. Current Chief of Staff Michelle Saddler will resume her position as the Secretary of the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS).
"Jack Lavin has helped my administration accomplish many of our top priorities and I have full confidence that he has the vision and ability to lead my office into a successful new term and will tackle the many serious issues facing our state," said Governor Quinn. "Michelle Saddler has done an excellent job as Chief of Staff. However, I wish to honor her preference to return to the work she began at the Department of Human Services. She is a key leader in my administration."
Lavin has served as Governor Quinn's Chief Operating Officer since February 2009, where he has led implementation of the Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program and directed the state's federal stimulus program. Lavin, who also leads Governor Quinn's job creation efforts, worked to keep Ford, Navistar and Chrysler in Illinois.
Throughout his career, Lavin has focused on economic development and job creation. Prior to his appointment as the state's Chief Operating Officer, Lavin served as the Director of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, where he completed hundreds of business transactions which generated billions of dollars in private investment and created thousands of jobs. Lavin also spent four years working for then-State Treasurer Pat Quinn. As Deputy Treasurer, Lavin led the office's job creation efforts by ensuring the availability of loans to create and expand small businesses.
"I am honored to serve the people of Illinois as Governor Quinn's Chief of Staff," said Lavin. "As our state continues to emerge from this historic economic downturn, I look forward to continuing to work to create jobs and build our economy, while ensuring that state government is more efficient, effective and accountable to the taxpayers of Illinois."
Throughout his career, Lavin has been active in the community, advocating for people with disabilities and working to solve education issues, particularly for children with special needs. Lavin is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has a master's degree in business with a specialization in finance, as well as a master's degree in international relations from the University of Chicago. He resides in Chicago with his wife, Kathy, and their three children.
"It has been a privilege to serve as Governor Quinn's Chief of Staff," said Saddler. "Returning to the Department of Human Services will allow me to pursue my truest passion and continue to address the immense challenges and needs facing human services in Illinois."
Saddler was appointed by Governor Quinn to be Secretary of DHS on Oct. 11, 2009. On Aug. 24 Governor Quinn appointed her as his Chief of Staff. Last week the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless honored Governor Quinn and Saddler for their work in creating and implementing the Put Illinois to Work program. More than 26,000 workers have been hired since Put Illinois to Work was launched last April.
Previously, Saddler held a number of policy and management positions in both the public and private sectors. She received her bachelor's degree from Princeton University and has a master's degree from Northwestern University's J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management.