Brooke Lierman hits 100-day mark on her time as the first woman Comptroller of Maryland. (Courtesy Photo)

By DaQuan Lawrence,
Special to the AFRO

Comptroller of Maryland, Brooke Lierman (D), was sworn into office on Jan. 16 as the first woman to serve in an independent, statewide office in the state of Maryland.

Leirman will serve as the 34th comptroller in the state and has announced several key appointments for her leadership and transition teams. 

Lierman appointed 13-year administrator Andrew Schaufele as chief deputy comptroller, and Rianna P. Matthews-Brown to serve as her chief of staff. 

Matthews-Brown is a Baltimore native and an experienced government administrator with experience in both the private and public sectors. She has worked on Capitol Hill for U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA-2) and the late Maryland Sen. Paul Sarbanes (D).

“I am thrilled to have Rianna and Andy as partners in this work,” said Lierman.

Matthews-Brown recently spent time working at Johns Hopkins University as deputy chief of staff to President Ronald Daniels, the Maryland Department of Health, the Baltimore City Department of Health and as an assistant legislative director for the Service Employees International Union.

Schaufele is a respected fiscal analyst and has worked in several capacities for outgoing Comptroller Peter Franchot (D). Between January and December of 2022, Schaufele had served as deputy comptroller.

“Rianna and Andy have the experience, skills, and creativity to support the transformation of the Office of the Comptroller into an innovative, accessible and more transparent state agency,” said Lierman. 

Lierman’s transition team includes a group of experienced women leaders, in addition to outgoing four-term comptroller, Peter V.R. Franchot (D). The transition team’s honorary chairs include state Sen. Susan Lee (D-Montgomery) and Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks (D).

Lierman’s transitional team co-chairs are former Treasurer Nancy Kopp, Del. Joseline Peña-Melnyk (D-Prince George’s and Anne Arundel), and Candace Dodson-Reed, chief of staff to the president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

In addition to leaders from the public and private sectors, her transition team includes various leaders from industries across the state of Maryland. 

“I am pleased and proud to have their support and counsel as I work to ensure that the comptroller’s office is set up for success on day one,” Lierman said.

Lierman’s transition team includes policy committees in areas such as pensions, tax administration and customer engagement, and data and innovation. The team also includes committees focused on local government and engagement, public works and procurement, sustainability and resilience, as well as public engagement and diversity, equity and inclusion. 

The comptroller’s inauguration took place outside the Treasury Building in Annapolis, Md. Before her swearing-in ceremony, she participated in a service project in Baltimore hosted by the Midway Community Development Corporation. The service project consisted of a community clean-up and was part of the national Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.

Lierman described the upcoming transition as a “grassroots, 24-county” effort that seeks to include various people with diverse viewpoints from across the state.

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