Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Executive Staff Changes

Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Executive Staff Changes


Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Lindy Eichebaum Lent, Mayor's Office

Mayor Hickenlooper Announces Executive Staff Changes

(DENVER) Mayor John Hickenlooper announced Tuesday some forthcoming changes to his executive management team, sparked by Chief of Staff and City Attorney Cole Finegan’s decision to pursue new opportunities beginning in December.


“While it customary to have some staff departures toward the end of a term in office, we are no less saddened by Cole Finegan’s upcoming departure,” said Hickenlooper, who shared the news with staff on Tuesday afternoon. “It is hard to put into words the dedication, loyalty, and expert skill he has displayed over the past three years. As if being City Attorney wasn’t challenging enough, he was generous to take on the added responsibilities of being our Chief of Staff. He has made many sacrifices – both personal and financial – on behalf of our administration and city, and we are grateful for his service and his friendship. Whatever company or organization he ends up with will be extremely fortunate to have him.”


Details of the changes are as follows:


  • City Attorney Cole Finegan, who joined the administration in October 2003 and has served double duty as Chief of Staff since July 2005, will be leaving on December 1, 2006. A new City Attorney will be announced prior to his departure.

  • Deputy Chief of Staff Kelly Brough will become Chief of Staff in December. The accountability and reform function, which Brough has overseen since August 2005, will be incorporated into the City’s finance department ensuring an enduring link between performance improvement, measurable outcomes and budget appropriations.

  • Chief Operating Officer Katherine Archuleta will become Senior Advisor on Policy and Initiatives in December, directing and overseeing policy issues on behalf of the administration at the federal, state and city levels.

Biographical information on Finegan, Brough and Archuleta is included below.


“Kelly Brough and Katherine Archuleta have been vital parts of our administration, bringing new ideas, energy and support to our talented team,” said Hickenlooper. “The skill, experience and continuity they will provide in their new roles will be a tremendous asset as we continue our commitment to innovation, results and excellence. They – and the rest of our team – join me in expressing heartfelt thanks to Cole Finegan for the foundation he helped us build.”


“From day one, my commitment was always to stay for one term – little did I know how much could be accomplished during that time,” Finegan said. “From critical reforms in the City Attorney’s Office and throughout the government – to identifying new efficiencies and budget savings – to leveraging critical economic development opportunities that will shape our community for generations to come, we have moved Denver forward with energy and with hope. I am inspired by all that we have accomplished, and I am grateful to the Mayor for the best job I’ve ever had. With the first term nearing its end, I feel now is the right time to transition to an executive team that has the skills, experience, talent, and energy to help guide the administration into an even more successful second term.”


Outgoing City Attorney and Chief of Staff: Cole Finegan
Finegan began his service as City Attorney on October 1, 2003, bringing experience both in private legal practice and in public service. The Mayor also appointed him as his Chief of Staff in July 2005.


Finegan reorganized the City Attorney’s Office for the first time in almost 20 years, providing enhanced service, greater accountability and over a $1 million in budget savings largely by reducing the City’s outside legal costs. Under his leadership, the City settled the longstanding Spy Files case and ensured the intelligence files would be archived in the Denver Public Library and ultimately available to the public. He was an integral part of the task force to enhance civilian oversight of the Denver Police Department, providing critical assistance in the development and implementation of numerous safety reforms. As Chief of Staff, Finegan organized the Financial Management Task Force that proposed key modernizations to the City’s antiquated financial structures which will appear on the November ballot. He currently serves as the co-chair of the Downtown Area Plan, bringing together business and community leaders to shape a comprehensive vision for downtown Denver’s next two decades.


Previously a partner at the Denver-based Brownstein Hyatt and Farber law firm, Finegan specialized in municipal law, land use issues, regulatory and administrative matters, and election law. Earlier in his career, he served as Chief Legal Counsel and Director of Policy and Initiatives for Colorado Governor Roy Romer. In these capacities, he handled the Governor’s legal matters, advised the Governor on judicial appointments, and supervised a policy development staff of 60 people working on economic, environmental, health care, energy, telecommunications, transportation and education policy issues.


Finegan also worked on Capitol Hill as Chief Legislative Assistant and Chief of Staff to U.S. Representative Jim Jones of Oklahoma, then Chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Budget Committee.


Finegan’s community involvement includes serving on the Denver Public Schools Foundation Board of Directors and as a member of the Colorado I Have A Dream Foundation Board of Directors. He is a past member of the State Board of Agriculture, the State Board of Colleges, the Auraria Higher Education Center Board, the Rocky Mountain Mutual Housing Association Board, and the Greater Denver Corporation Board.


Finegan received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and his law degree from Georgetown University, where he worked for The Tax Lawyer Law Review.


Chief of Staff: Kelly Brough
In August 2005, Hickenlooper appointed Brough as deputy chief of staff for Accountability and Reform, a capacity in which she has overseen the development and implementation of the 3-1-1 customer service system, the most sweeping citywide technological and operational innovation in the history of Denver.


She previously served two years as director of Denver’s Career Service Authority, where she established a framework to transition the City’s human resources staff to a culture based on service delivery and focused on outcomes. She led the development of a compensation philosophy and long-term strategy, shifting over 8,600 City employees to a full pay-for-performance system. Under her leadership, CSA trimmed the human resources budget by 20% while enhancing the value of services provided, developed new human resources rules to provide flexibility and better meet the operational needs of the City, and revamped the communications strategy to improve internal information flow to employees.


Prior to taking the helm of CSA in July 2003, Brough was campaign manager for Susan Casey’s 2003 mayoral campaign. She previously spent six years as director of training for the University of Colorado at Denver’s Center for the Improvement of Public Management and Center for Public-Private Sector Cooperation. In this capacity, she directed a leadership program for public officials and worked with the City and County of Denver to engage residents, neighborhoods and businesses in public policy discussions on a broad range of issues, including Denver's Comprehensive Plan, The Parks Game Plan, police reform and even parking meter rates.


She also worked for the City and County of Denver from 1989-1997, as a legislative analyst for City Council and as a personnel analyst for CSA. In these capacities, she served as a member of the City’s negotiating team with employee groups, prepared budget and position papers, and oversaw the administration of the performance evaluation system.


Brough received her bachelor’s degree in sociology and criminal justice from Montana State University and her Masters of Business Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver. She has participated in subsequent leadership programs at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and, in 2001, received a German Marshall Memorial Fellowship to study local public policy in Europe.


Senior Advisor on Policy and Initiatives: Katherine Archuleta
Archuleta left her position as executive director of the National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation in Albuquerque, New Mexico to join the Hickenlooper administration in October 2005 as chief operating officer, focusing on internal management and operational issues including the coordination of City departments and agencies to implement the administration’s policy and programmatic initiatives.


Initially an educator and administrator for Denver Public Schools, Archuleta joined former Denver Mayor Federico Peña’s administration in 1983. During her eight years with the City and County of Denver, she served as Pena’s administrative assistant, deputy chief of staff and administrative cabinet officer. She later served as the director of special initiatives for the Hunt Alternatives Fund, the private foundation of philanthropist Swanee Hunt. In 1993, she joined then-Secretary Peña in Washington where she served as his deputy chief of staff and chief of staff in the U.S. Department of Transportation and as his senior policy advisor in the U.S. Department of Energy.


Archuleta returned to Denver in 1997 to co-found the Center for Regional and Neighborhood Action, a nonprofit focused on assisting state, local and regional governments with strategic planning, facilitation, and leadership development surrounding the issues of regional growth management. She later worked as director of professional services for the Denver-based law firm of Davis, Graham and Stubbs, LLP, and co-founded Semilla Group, a women-owned consulting group assisting private and public agencies with policy development strategies and workplace issues.


In 2002, Archuleta designed and led the nonpartisan Latina Initiative, a civic engagement project in Denver aimed at encouraging Latinas to become active, engaged voters. She also helped found the Colorado Women’s Foundation and Mi Casa Resource Center for Women, Denver’s nationally recognized women’s employment and training center.


Archuleta received her bachelor’s degree in education from Metropolitan State College in Denver and her masters in education from the University of Northern Colorado. She participated in Harvard University’s Institute for Senior Executives in State and Local Government and the University of Colorado’s Rocky Mountain Program for State and Local Officials.


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Posted on Sep 26, 2006 (Archive on Oct 26, 2006)
Posted by kpellegrin  Contributed by kpellegrin