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Congratulations to Gerardo (Jerry) Russo '99 for becoming the Vice President of Communications at Empire State Development recently. We have included the press release of Governor Cuomo announcing the appointment from www.governor.ny.gov (September 19, 2013).

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the appointments of Kay Sarlin and Gerardo Russo to Empire State Development (ESD). Ms. Sarlin will serve as Executive Vice President of Public Affairs and Strategic Initiatives, and Mr. Russo will serve as Vice President of Communications.

"I am pleased to welcome Kay Sarlin and Gerardo Russo to the administration as they join Empire State Development," Governor Cuomo said. "ESD is the State agency dedicated to economic development, attracting private investment, and creating jobs for New Yorkers. Ms. Sarlin and Mr. Russo will bring valuable private and public sector experience to help carry out that mission. In the last few years, we have made considerable progress in revitalizing local economies in communities across the state and I am confident these two new members of our team will help continue this great work."

Kay Sarlin

Ms. Sarlin most recently served as Associate Commissioner of the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA). In this position, she served as the Commissioner's senior advisor for marketing, creative services and communications, and provided strategic advice on political and policy matters on the City, State and Federal levels. She oversaw DCA's marketing and public awareness campaigns, which included managing advertising efforts and producing dozens of videos to highlight city services to consumers. During her four years at DCA, she launched ten public awareness campaigns and created the "Protect Your Money" brand. Ms. Sarlin also previously worked in the New York City Department of Transportation, serving as chief spokesperson for the Department and developing and executing their media relations strategy. Prior to joining DCA, Ms. Sarlin was Vice President of the Glover Park Group, where she was the lead communications advisor to major national corporations, non-profits and political campaigns. Ms. Sarlin received her M.S. in Journalism from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and her B.A. in Political Science from Hobart and Williams Smith Colleges.

Gerardo Russo

Mr. Russo most recently served as a senior policy advisor for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, working on a full range of day-to-day and long-term policy, operational, and administrative matters affecting New York City and its agencies. Previously, he was Press Secretary to former Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein, as well as a Deputy Press Secretary for Mayor Bloomberg and a spokesman for the Mayor's 2001 electoral campaign. Mr. Russo earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from the George Washington University Law School.

About Empire State Development

Empire State Development (ESD) is New York's chief economic development agency. The mission of Empire State Development is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, Empire State Development strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State.