Gov. Ned Lamont announced Wednesday he will nominate Alexandra Daum as the commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development on Jan. 4, the first day of his second term.
If confirmed by the General Assembly, she will succeed David Lehman, the former Goldman Sachs partner who intends to leave the administration at the end of the governor’s first term.
Daum is currently deputy commissioner and chief investment officer of DECD, overseeing state investment in local economic development projects and initiatives, including greenfield and brownfield real estate developments.
Lehman acted as Lamont’s economic adviser, as well as commissioner of DECD, and was credited with revamping economic development incentives and overseeing the reopening of businesses after COVID-19 closures.
Chris DiPentima, the president of the Connecticut Business and Industries Association, said the business community applauded DECD’s shift under Lehman from awarding grants to major companies, sometimes based out of state, to helping local companies.
“That was remedied under David and the current administration,” he said.
Lehman, who worked without salary for four years, had long planned to leave state service after one term, leaving Daum as heir apparent.
“For the last several years, Alexandra has worked alongside David Lehman as part of the leadership team in Connecticut’s economic development office, which is why I am confident this will be a smooth transition,” Lamont said.
“In addition to being intimately familiar with the functions of this important state agency, Alexandra has existing relationships with many of Connecticut’s leading employers and industry leaders, and she is ready to hit the ground running,” he said.
Like Lehman, Daum joined DECD from the private sector.
Daum was the founder and principal of Field Properties, a real estate investor in New Haven. She began her real estate career at Trammell Crow Residential.
She has a bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.