“She was also the first finance director to serve two governors of different parties.
“Matosantos grew up in Puerto Rico, the daughter of a businessman and a high school administrator, and received a bachelor's degree in political science and feminist studies from Stanford University in 1997. After graduating, she spent two years working at the San Francisco-based Equal Rights Advocates, a public interest law firm that focuses on women’s rights.
“She considered law school, but instead began her state government career as a consultant to the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services and as the human services consultant to the Senate Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review. Matosantos moved to the executive branch in 2004 as a member of the Health and Human Services Agency, where she served as an assistant secretary for programs and fiscal affairs and associate secretary for legislative affairs. In 2007, she became deputy legislative secretary for Health and Human Services and Veterans Affairs in the office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger where she worked on the administration’s comprehensive health care reform proposal.
“From April 2008 to December 2009, Matosantos was the chief deputy director for budgets.
Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed Matosantos, a Democrat, finance director in 2009. She was reappointed director by Governor Jerry Brown in January 2011 and 10 months later was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence, pleaded no contest to driving while over the legal limit for alcohol and was sentenced to three years’ probation.
“She resigned her post in September 2013.”
I write this post to point out that none of the appointees has any private sector restructuring experience, with the exception of a couple of “estate neutral” assignments Judge Gonzalez handled since leaving the bench. (With all due respect to Professor Skeel (whose academic work I am sure is first-rate) and any other academic out there, I’ve never seen a full-time academic who could survive in a practice in a given debt restructuring situation. Totally different mindsets and, after a point, skill sets.)
Indeed, with the exception of Mr. Carrion and Mr. J Gonzalez’s work at a government-subsidized lender, none of the appointees has any extended private sector experience of any kind.
Last, notwithstanding that two of them held an executive office at the local development bank, none of them has any successful experience in economic development. Most of the total years of employment of the board members come in government, government-subsidized, or not-for-profit institutions. Yet, I would submit, the two things the island needs are economic development not dependent on infusion of funds from outside sources, and debt restructuring.
I point particularly to Ms. Matosantos. Even though she appears to have been in office during the period California handed out IOUs to its suppliers, there is no comparison between what a giant economy like California can do to turn itself around and attract talented entrepreneurs and what a modest Caribbean island can do, especially when there is no restriction of emigration from the island to Florida, New York or other destinations on the mainland.