Governor-elect Ned Lamont tapped the public and private sectors in making two key staff appointments this week.

Lamont named Ryan Drajewicz, an executive with Westport-based hedge fund Bridgewater Associates, as his chief of staff.

Lamont appointments
Governor-elect Ned Lamont named Melissa McCaw to lead his budget office and appointed Ryan Drajewicz as chief of staff.

He also appointed city of Hartford chief financial officer Melissa McCaw to lead the Office of Policy and Management, responsible for overseeing the state budget.

Drajewicz, who was previously deputy chief of staff to former U.S. Senator Chris Dodd, took leave from Bridgewater to head up Lamont's transition team.

"This will be an office of the governor with a new energy, entrepreneurial spirit, and creativity," Drajewicz said after Lamont announced the appointments.

"This is a new chapter for Connecticut and we are going to do things differently."

Budget Challenges

McCaw previously worked as an analyst with OPM and as budget director at the University of Hartford.

She leaves her Hartford post, where she helped the city avoid bankruptcy, for another challenging position—resolving years of projected multi-billion dollar state budget deficits.

"I look forward to achieving the governor-elect's vision for a budget and policy plan that addresses Connecticut's fiscal crisis, spreads out economic opportunity, and helps grow Connecticut's middle class," she said.

While Lamont has ruled out using surplus funds to help close budget deficits, he again said this week he would consider expanding the state's sales tax base.

"To grow our economy, add jobs, and give the business community confidence, we have to fix our budget challenges," he said.