New State Auditor Tom Schweich says he made a concentrated effort to bring some people on his staff with some extensive private and public work experience.
Harry Otto worked for the Department of Revenue before moving into the private sector early in his 40-year career. He eventually became the president of the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants.
“I’m used to answering to a client, a series of clients, and the shareholders. Right now I think I’ve got a little over 6 million shareholders to answer to,” Otto said.
Otto says, likely just a few years from retirement either way, it seemed like the right time for him to make the move to Deputy State Auditor position. He says the impact he’ll be able to have in tight economic times was a factor in the decision.
“You know, money is so dear now and the auditor’s office has a more important role to play. The dearer the money gets, the harder it is to find. So yes, there will be a better reward, I think, in a sense of getting something done or accomplished for the citizens of the state,” Otto said.
He says the staff should be able to work together well.
“I absolutely do feel very confident in this staff that we have, from the Director of Audit level on down. All three of the Directors of Audits have agreed to stay. I would not have considered this job if Tom Schweich would have told me that we were going to replace all of the Directors of Audits. There’s just too much institutional knowledge, many of these folks have been here since college, in excess of 30 years in some cases,” Otto said.
Otto was also an Army reservist for 6 years.