Gov. Chris Gregoire today appointed Brad Flaherty as director of the Department of Revenue. Flaherty replaces Suzan DelBene, who announced her departure yesterday.
"Brad's knowledge of this agency and how it works is unmatched," Gregoire said. "He brings more than 30 years of experience at DOR to this role, as well as extensive knowledge of how the agency assesses, collects, processes, audits and accounts for state and local taxes. That insight is necessary as we move forward with our tax simplification proposals, and I'm confident Brad will continue the momentum that has already been started."
"I am pleased to accept this appointment during these challenging times," said Flaherty. "The Department of Revenue is an agency that takes pride in forming relationships to promote fair and equitable tax administration that fund important state services. I value those relationships and look forward to continuing the collaboration and cooperation that we have benefited from in the past."
Flaherty started at DOR in 1979 as a revenue auditor, and continued to move up the ranks at the agency. In 2006, he was named assistant director of the agency's property tax division, and in that position, earned the 2009 Governor's Award for Leadership Management. Last August, he was asked to serve as deputy director of DOR.
Flaherty earned a degree in business administration at the University of Washington. He also has taken course work in strategic management of regulatory and enforcement agencies at Harvard University and strategic leadership for state executives at Duke University.
"I commend Suzan DelBene for her tireless work to ensure an easier tax system for our businesses," Gregoire said. "She spent the last year travelling to every corner of our state to fully understand our current structure and develop ways to improve it to help our businesses not only succeed, but grow and hire. Her efforts will not go unnoticed by the thousands who will benefit. I wish her all the best."