The State Worker

Former Schwarzenegger aide named CalPERS interim CEO

As CalPERS long-time chief executive prepares to leave at the end of this month, the pension fund’s board has named a former aide from the Republican Schwarzenegger administration as interim CEO.

Douglas Hoffner has served governors on both sides of the political aisle. Under Gov. Jerry Brown, he was appointed undersecretary and then acting secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency. He moved to CalPERS in 2012, where he has managed the fund’s operations and human resources.

Under former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Hoffner’s titles included deputy cabinet secretary and assistant director for legislation at the California Department of General Services. Schwarzenegger routinely hammered away at public pensions, calling them “the single biggest threat” to California’s future. On his way out of office in 2010, he successfully negotiated pension changes with state employee unions that foreshadowed Brown’s 2013 pension reform law.

Hoffner replaces Anne Stausboll, who leaves July 30 after a seven-year run as CalPERS’ top executive, an era marred by huge investment losses following the 2008 market meltdown and a bribery scandal involving her predecessor, Fred Buenrostro.

After Stausboll announced her retirement plans in January, CalPERS started looking for her successor.

“Our recruitment is going extremely well and we have strong candidates,” CalPERS President Rob Feckner said in a statement. “We expect to conclude the process in the coming weeks.”