SAPA 2021-22 Board of Directors
FAUSTO FRANCO (Chair) – Fausto is a SAPA Board appointee who will finish the term of a Board member who resigned. He is a Senior Information Security Officer at NYS ITS where he serves as the lead supporting NYS OMH and OASAS. He also assists the Business Information Security Officers that support the agencies that make up the Public Safety and the Workforce and Public Service Portfolios. Prior to working for ITS, Fausto was a software engineer/project manager for NYS OPWDD, working on systems that helped the agency support the individuals they serve. Fausto holds a Master’s in Computer Systems Engineering from RPI and is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional and certified in Strategic Planning, Policy and Leadership. He has spoken at the NYS Cyber Security Conference and been a guest lecturer at SUNY Albany covering topics in cyber security.
SORELLE L. BRAUTH (Rockefeller Award Committee Chair) – Sorelle recently retired as the Director of Administration for the New York State Department of Public Service (DPS). She began her career with NYS Government in the Rockefeller Public Management Intern Program and has had an extensive career for almost 35 years, primarily in budgeting, holding policy and management level positions with the New York State Division of the Budget as well as the State Education Department. She was also a former Director of Financial Administration for the Office of Attorney General as well as, DPS’ Director of Finance and Budget for seven years. Sorelle has degrees from both Boston University (Master’s in Educational Administration), and the State University of New York at Oneonta (Bachelor of Science).
CHRIS CURTIS (SAPA Treasurer) – Chris is Deputy Commissioner and State Treasurer for the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance (DTF) where he manages joint custody of the state’s general checking account with the Office of the State Comptroller. Prior to his appointment as State Treasurer, Chris worked at the New York State Division of Budget for eight years managing state debt, and served on the team that helped the state contend with the national financial crisis that began to unfold in late 2007. Chris began his career at the United States Department of the Treasury in Washington, DC as a financial economist focused on federal loan guarantee programs. He earned a master’s degree in political economy from the London School of Economics and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Siena College.
ROBERT (BOB) CURTIN – Bob is a Certified Public Accountant and recently retired as the Director of Financial Administration for the NYS Office of General Services where he was responsible for operation of the Procurement, Budget and Accounting Units as well as implementing agency wide changes brought on by the Statewide Financial Management System (SFS), the Business Services Center (BSC) and changes in agency policy. Prior to assuming this position, Bob was an internal auditor at OGS and was responsible for the operation for the Internal Audit Unit From 1997 to 2015. Previously he worked with the New York State Comptroller’s Office Bureau of Management Audit beginning his career in October of 1986.
DANIEL CUNNINGHAM – Dan recently retired as the Executive Deputy Commissioner of NYS Office of General Services. He helped to transform the agency in his roles as Assistant Director of Organizational Effectiveness, Director of Human Resources Management, Associate Commissioner for Admin., Deputy Commissioner for Admin. & Operations, and Exec. Deputy Commissioner. Dan’s career with NYS began in 1984 with GOER and in 1987, the NYS/CSEA Labor-Management Committees, administering the NYS/CSEA Joint Apprenticeship & Safety & Health Programs. He a past recipient of a SAPA Public Service Excellence Award.
THERESA HARLEY – Theresa currently is the Assistant Director of Finance and Budget with the Department of Public Service, where she manages accounts payable, budget and expenditure controls. She was previously employed with the NYS Department of Health as a Program Manager, where Theresa provided fiscal analysis and management of contracts, budgets and work plans. She served as the Health and Human Services Office of Women’s Health liaison. Her time with the New York State Division of Budget included, fiscal oversight and management of agency budgets and monitoring spending of Community Projects Fund discretionary initiatives. Theresa serves as a University at Albany Alumni Association volunteer and Career Network Advisor. She holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Public Administration degrees from the University at Albany.
DEREK HOLTZCLAW – Derek is Deputy Commissioner. of Finance & Administration for the NYS Office of Children & Family Services. His career began as a Budget Fellow with NYS Division of the Budget. There he served 16 years working on a wide range of assignments. Derek moved to OCFS in 2010 as Budget Director. He eventually was promoted to his current position where he oversees all financial & administrative operations. Derek has an Masters in Public Administration & Finance from Clark Atlanta University and a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
KAREN KIRSTEIN (SAPA Secretary) – Karen is currently a Senior Municipal Financial Analyst with the Local Government and School Accountability Unit at the NYS Office of the Comptroller. She gets to do what she loves – research and data analysis. Previously, she was a Principal Employment and Training Coordinator with Schenectady County in their One Stop Career Center with an emphasis on fiscal management, outcome improvement, and quality assurance. She has served within two fellowships, as a NYS Excelsior Service Fellow in the Nonprofit Coordination Unit of the NYS Executive Chamber and as a Women and Public Policy Fellow with the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society within the NYS Department of Labor in the Youth Unit of Workforce Solutions. Prior to her NYS service, Karen was a Program Administration HIPAA Compliance Specialist with Schenectady Works, City Mission. Additionally, she has served as a project manager for the ARC of New York, an Education Specialist for the Office of Assessment for the NYS Education Department, and a teacher for ten years with the Schenectady City School District.
EUGENE (GENE) MONACO (SAPA Excellence Awards Program Chair) – Gene is a Public Service Professor and for the past 25 years has served as Executive Director of the Professional Development Program (PDP) of Rockefeller College, one of the largest university-based continuing professional education programs in the nation. Monaco has over 30 years of experience in the design and delivery of instructional activities. Before coming to the UAlbany in 1986, Gene served as the Dean of Continuing Education and the Executive Director of the Public and Community Service Project at Hudson Valley Community College. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations, the College of Saint Rose, and Schenectady County Community College. He is the co-author of two books on government and technology.
STEPHEN L. SCHECHTER (SAPA Program Director) – Stephen is a Professor of Political Science at Russell Sage College in Troy where he also directs the Council for Citizenship Education. He teaches Public Policy, State Government, Community Politics and Civic Leadership. Newly elected to the SAPA Board in 2016, Stephen recently completed a stint as Editor-in-Chief of the Encyclopedia of America Governance.
THOMAS LUKACS (Immediate Past Chair) – Tom is Director of Risk Management for the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) and serves as DFS’s Internal Control Officer where he oversees DFS’s internal control program. He formerly monitored compliance with the State’s cyber security requirements and standards, and was the Emergency Management Planning Coordinator. From 2000 through 2013, Tom led the NYS Division of the Budget’s statewide implementation of the Internal Control, Internal Audit and Federal Single Audit programs and initiated the NYS Internal Control Task Force. In 2007, Tom created the NYS Internal Control Act Executive Briefing Book.
JOAN SULLIVAN (Excellence Awards Program Chair) – Joan recently retired as the Executive Director of the New York State Forum for Information Resource Management. Prior to her current post, Joan had a long, distinguished career with the State of New York in executive level positions.
PAUL SHATSOFF (Webmaster) – Paul is a former Chair and former Executive Director of SAPA. He had decades of NYS service in management positions prior to retirement. Paul most recently served as Director of Government Relations and Clean Energy Programs for a non-profit organization based in Albany.