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Governor-elect Lincoln Chafee Announces Catherine Taylor as Choice to Head Department of Elderly Affairs

Providence, R.I.—Governor-elect Lincoln Chafee announced today that Catherine T. Taylor, the Republican candidate for Secretary of State and top GOP vote recipient in November’s elections, is his pick to be the next Director of the Department of Elderly Affairs.

“Catherine is a natural leader of fierce intellect and uncompromising values,” Chafee said. “She proved over the course of her campaign for Secretary of State that she is a determined and pragmatic problem-solver who approaches the challenges facing our state with energy and thoughtfulness.”

“Rhode Island has one of the highest per capita populations of seniors in the country,” Chafee continued. “It is essential that our state government is attentive to the needs and challenges of this important group of citizens. Catherine will be a responsive, responsible, and excellent Director of the Department of Elderly Affairs.”

“I have long known and admired Governor-elect Chafee, and I am honored that he has given me this opportunity to serve an important population of Rhode Islanders,” Taylor said. “Governor-elect Chafee is not afraid to draw from various political backgrounds – he wants the very best and most capable people serving in state government, regardless of political affiliation.”

Catherine T. Taylor is the former GOP candidate for Rhode Island Secretary of State. She lost to the incumbent by 1.2 %, and was the top Republican vote-getter in the 2010 elections. In early 2007, Taylor co-founded a public affairs consulting firm based in Providence; she has worked primarily with clients in the fields of behavioral health care, economic development and the environment. She previously served as a U.S. Senate staff member for 20 years, both in Washington and Rhode Island, first as a legislative assistant for defense and foreign policy for Senator John Chafee. She became speechwriter during the effort to enact health care reform in 1993-4, then moved to the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works in 1995 to serve as speechwriter to Chairman Chafee. She served as speechwriter and senior editor on the staff of Senator Lincoln Chafee for his entire Senate tenure. Taylor’s current volunteer commitments include: Member of the Moses Brown School Board of Overseers, where she chairs the Nominating Committee and served on the search committee for the new Head of School and the committee to oversee implementation of the Strategic Plan; Regional Director of the Yale Global Day of Service; and Finance Committee member and Eucharistic minister at St. Sebastian’s Church. Taylor has also volunteered her time with Crossroads Rhode Island, the Providence Public Library, the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School, and Cub Scout Pack 88. She lives in Providence with her husband and their four children.

The mission of the Rhode Island Department of Elderly Affairs is to ensure excellence in service, advocacy and public policy dedicated to the needs of older Rhode Islanders and their caregivers through a single, visible and responsive agency.

Governor-elect Lincoln D. Chafee will be the first independent Governor in Rhode Island history. His winning campaign focused on a new way forward for Rhode Island, one based on honesty, integrity, and independence. Chafee has pledged to utilize the state’s existing assets to maximize economic growth and job creation, to address the state’s fiscal instability through an honest budget process, and to root out the cronyism and corruption that have long run rampant in Rhode Island and are harmful to economic growth. Chafee previously served four years on the Warwick City Council, nearly four two-year terms as Mayor of Warwick, and seven years as US Senator. Most recently, he spent two years as Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Brown’s Watson Institute for International Studies, and wrote Against the Tide: How a Compliant Congress Empowered a Reckless President.

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