October 19, 2020
NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today appointed Melanie Hartzog as Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services and Jacques Jiha as Director of the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget. Hartzog previously served as Budget Director and Jiha served as the Commissioner for the New York City Department of Finance. As Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services, Hartzog will guide the City’s response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and ensure the City’s social services continue to support every New Yorker, especially those experiencing homelessness. As Budget Director, Jiha will help lead New York City out of the fiscal crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic by making fiscally responsible decisions that will strengthen and protect the City’s finances for generations to come.
“I am pleased to appoint two of our City’s most hard-working and passionate public servants to take on even bigger roles as we continue to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Melanie and Jacques have the experience and vision necessary to support New Yorkers during this crisis and guide our City through financial hardship. Thanks to them, New Yorkers can expect an even brighter future.”
“From fighting to improve the lives of low-income children to balancing the city’s budgets while funding Universal Pre-K, I have spent my entire career uplifting our city’s most vulnerable,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Melanie Hartzog. “The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of public health in our city’s recovery, including a robust social services sector. I thank Mayor de Blasio for the opportunity to continue to serve on behalf of 8.6 million New Yorkers.”
“Our city is facing an enormous fiscal challenge in light of the public health crisis. As we recover, I am committed to making fiscally responsible decisions to keep New York City a vibrant place to live and work. Serving as Commissioner of the Department of Finance has been the honor of a lifetime, and I thank Mayor de Blasio for entrusting me to continue to serve New Yorkers as Budget Director,” said Budget Director Jacques Jiha.
About Melanie Hartzog:
Melanie Hartzog previously served as the Director of the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget, where she oversaw the largest municipal budget in the United States, responsible for funding all city programs and services for New Yorkers. Before joining the Office of Management and Budget, Hartzog served as Executive Director of the Children’s Defense Fund. Previously, she served as Family Services Coordinator for the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services and Deputy Commissioner of the Administration for Children’s Services. She also led a social services unit in the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget, and was Director of Policy and Advocacy for the Human Services Council of New York City, Inc.
Hartzog holds a Master of Science degree from the New School’s Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy and Bachelor of Arts from Eckerd College. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and three children.
“Mel has been an extraordinary leader in government and in the not-for-profit advocacy community for many years, and we have worked together both in and out of government to expand and improve services for low-income New Yorkers, particularly children. She will be an outstanding Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services and I look forward to working with her to make sure that the most vulnerable residents of our city have access to the social services they need in these unprecedented times,“ said Steven Banks, the Commissioner of the Department of Social Services.
“Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York extends profound appreciation to Ms. Melanie Hartzog for years of steady stewardship of the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget and we wish her well as she takes on the role of Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services. Ms. Hartzog is incredibly well positioned to work successfully across the sector with colleagues inside and outside of government. CCC stands ready to partner with her as the strength of health and human service agencies, community based partners and workforce, and the New Yorkers depending on their care are essential to the City’s pandemic recovery efforts,” said Jennifer March Ph.D., Executive Director, Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York.
About Jacques Jiha:
In 2014, Mayor de Blasio appointed Jacques Jiha as the Commissioner for the NYC Department of Finance, the agency responsible for collecting over $40 billion in revenue that make all city services possible. As Commissioner, Dr. Jiha modernized the Department by integrating new technology and data analytics to increase efficiency and make better decisions. Under his leadership, the Department also created new options focusing on customer experience, including a full-service call-center, online property tax system, parking ticket mobile app and the offices of the Taxpayer Advocate and Parking Summons Advocate. Prior to becoming commissioner of the Department of Finance, Dr. Jiha was the chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Earl G. Graves, Ltd/Black Enterprise. Previously, he served as deputy comptroller for pension investment and public finance in the Office of the New York State Comptroller, deputy comptroller for Nassau County, chief economist for the New York City Office of the Comptroller, executive director of the New York State Legislative Tax Study Commission, and principal economist for the New York State Assembly Committee on Ways and Means.
Born in Haiti, Dr. Jiha immigrated to New York City in 1979 and earned his bachelor’s degree in economics from Fordham University. He also holds a Ph.D. and a master’s degree in economics from the New School for Social Research. He lives in Queens with his wife and daughters.