Gina Raimondo

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Gina Raimondo
Governor Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island.jpg
75th Governor of Rhode Island
Assumed office
January 6, 2015
LieutenantDaniel McKee
Preceded byLincoln Chafee
Chair of the Democratic Governors Association
In office
December 1, 2018 – December 4, 2019
Preceded byJay Inslee
Succeeded byPhil Murphy
General Treasurer of Rhode Island
In office
January 4, 2011 – January 6, 2015
GovernorLincoln Chafee
Preceded byFrank Caprio
Succeeded bySeth Magaziner
Personal details
Gina Marie Raimondo

(1971-05-17) May 17, 1971 (age 48)
Smithfield, Rhode Island, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Andrew Moffit (m. 2001)
EducationHarvard University (BA)
New College, Oxford (MA, DPhil)
Yale University (JD)

Gina Marie Raimondo (/rəˈmɒnd/; born May 17, 1971) is an American politician and venture capitalist serving as the 75th Governor of Rhode Island since 2015. A member of the Democratic Party, she is the first woman to serve as Governor of Rhode Island.[1] Prior to her election, she served as General Treasurer of Rhode Island from 2011 to 2015 and was the second woman to hold the office. She was selected as the Democratic candidate for Rhode Island's governorship in the 2014 election. Raimondo won the election on November 4, 2014, with 41% of the vote, in a three-way race, against the Mayor of Cranston, Republican Allan Fung, and businessman Robert Healey.[2]

Raimondo was elected to serve as the Vice Chair of the Democratic Governors Association for the 2018 election cycle.[3] As of 2019, she is the Chair of the Democratic Governors Association, and is only the second woman to serve in that position.[4] Raimondo ran for and won reelection to a second term in 2018, and becoming the first candidate to secure a majority of votes for that office since 2006.

Early life and education[edit]

Gina Marie Raimondo was born May 17, 1971[5] in Smithfield, Rhode Island, where she later grew up. Of Italian descent, she is the youngest of Josephine (Piro) and Joseph Raimondo's three children.[6][7] Her father worked for a watch company. Raimondo graduated from LaSalle Academy, in Providence, as one of the first girls[8] allowed to attend the Catholic school, where she was valedictorian.[9]

Raimondo graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (AB) degree magna cum laude in Economics from Harvard University in 1993, where she served on the staff of The Harvard Crimson.[10] She attended New College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, where she received a Master of Arts (MA) degree and Doctor of Philosophy in 2002 in Sociology.[11] Her doctoral thesis was on single motherhood and supervised by Stephen Nickell and Anne H. Gauthier while she was a postgraduate student of New College, Oxford.[11][12] Raimondo received her Juris Doctor (JD) degree from Yale Law School in 1998.[12]

Early career[edit]

Following her graduation from Yale Law School, Raimondo served as a law clerk to federal Judge Kimba Wood of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Later, Raimondo acted as Senior Vice President for Fund Development at the Manhattan offices of Village Ventures, a venture capital firm based in Williamstown, Massachusetts, and backed by Bain Capital and Highland Capital Groups.[13][14] Raimondo returned to Rhode Island in 2000 to co-found the state's first venture capital firm, Point Judith Capital. Point Judith subsequently relocated its offices to Boston, Massachusetts.[15] At Point Judith, Raimondo served as a general partner covering health care investments; she retains some executive duties with the firm.[16][17]

General treasurer of Rhode Island[edit]

On November 2, 2010, Raimondo defeated her Republican opponent, Kernan King, for the office of general treasurer. She defeated Mr. King by a wide margin of 62 percent to 38 percent. She received 201,625 votes, more than any other Rhode Island candidate during the 2010 elections.[18] She is the second woman, after Republican Nancy J. Mayer of Bristol, to serve in that capacity since 1940.[19]

Pension policies[edit]

Raimondo in 2012

During her first year as General Treasurer, she headed the effort to reform Rhode Island's public employee pension system, which was 48% funded in 2010.[20] In April 2011, Raimondo led the state retirement board to reduce the state's assumed rate of return on pension investments from 8.25 percent to 7.5 percent.[21] In May 2011, Raimondo released "Truth in Numbers", a report that advocated for benefit cuts as the solution to Rhode Island's pension problems, and she helped lead the effort to cut pensions, along with Gordon Fox, who was then speaker of the House.[22] The Rhode Island Retirement Security Act (RIRSA) was enacted by the General Assembly on November 17, 2012, with bipartisan support in both chambers. The next day, Lincoln Chafee signed RIRSA into law. A Brown University poll, conducted in December 2011, found that 60 percent of Rhode Island residents supported the pension reform.[23] The legality of RIRSA was challenged in court by the public employee unions, but a settlement was reached in June 2015.[24]

Under Raimondo's tenure the pension fund was criticized for underperforming its peers.[25] Some of Raimondo's critics attributed the underperformance to a sharp increase in fees paid to hedge fund managers, while her supporters argue investments in hedge funds stabilize investments during market downturns for more consistent returns over time.[26]


Raimondo created the Ocean State Investment Pool (OSIP), a low-cost investment vehicle intended to help the state and municipalities better manage and improve the investment performance of their liquid assets, which are used for day-to-day operations including payroll and operating expenses. $500 million in funds could be eligible for the program, which would enable Treasury "to extend its expertise to municipalities and improve investment returns by creating economies of scale."[27] The program launched in April 23, 2012.[28]


In 2011, Raimondo led a review of the state's bond disclosure practices and updated the information statement and related bond disclosure information that will accompany future bond offerings.[29] In conjunction with the changes to bond disclosure policies, Raimondo launched the state's first 'Investor Relations Portal', which includes financial information and related reports from the office of the general treasurer, the Employees' Retirement System of Rhode Island, the state budget office, the department of revenue, and the state office of the auditor general.[30]

After a struggle to get the information in August 2013 The Providence Journal got info from some funds "Among the information redacted: what companies the funds invest in, past returns and withdrawal rates, how much the partners earn and their personal stakes in their funds, even such details as the identities of traders and the funds' outside auditing and accounting firms."[31]

On July 11, 2018, the SEC named Raimondo in Pay-to-Play Scheme with Investment Firm Oaktree.

Payday lending[edit]

During the Rhode Island General Assembly's 2012 session, Raimondo advocated for a decrease in the maximum allowable interest rate on payday loans in Rhode Island. She hosted a roundtable discussion with then Providence Mayor Angel Taveras and members of the Rhode Island Payday Reform Coalition.[32] Raimondo submitted letters to the Senate and House Corporations Committees in support of payday reform legislation. She wrote, "Far too many families are facing financial challenges that might be mitigated or avoided through a greater understanding of personal finance," and "payday loans exploit that lack of understanding…. With numerous economic challenges, Rhode Island should not permit the sale of a financial product that traps so many customers in a cycle of debt."[33] Raimondo wrote an op-ed in the edition of May 29, 2012 of The Providence Journal in support of payday lending reform.[34]

Governor of Rhode Island[edit]

Raimondo at her inauguration

Raimondo was elected governor of Rhode Island on November 4, 2014, winning 41% of the vote in a three-way race, defeating challengers Allan Fung (R) and Robert J. Healey of the Moderate Party. Raimondo is the first female governor of Rhode Island.[35] She is also one of nine current female governors of the United States. During her first year as governor, she advocated expanding the state's Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), raising the minimum wage, lowering the state's minimum corporate tax rate, and eliminating the tax on commercial energy use.[citation needed]

Raimondo served as the Vice Chair of the Democratic Governors Association for the 2018 election cycle[3] and became Chair in 2019.[36]


State government computer system failure[edit]

In February 2017, Raimondo's Executive Secretary of Health and Human Services Elizabeth H. Roberts resigned from her post[37] due to the failed roll-out of the botched Unified Health Infrastructure Project (a new statewide computer network).[37] The disastrous UHIP computer network launch in September 2016 saw scores of people without access government to programs such as food stamps and child care due to glitches in the software, designed[38] by Deloitte. This crash created a backlog of over 20,000 cases.[39]

RI DCYF fatalities and near-fatalities[edit]

Under Governor Raimondo, the Rhode Island DCYF has come under fire due to its relatively high rate of deaths and near-deaths of children in its care.[40] In a period between January 2016 and December 2017, there were 31 fatalities or near fatalities of children in its care, with eight being confirmed fatal.[40]

Raimondo appointed Trista Piccola as her new DCYF Director, and served in that position from January 2017 until July 2019. Her term was marked by the death and near-deaths of children,[40] high staff turn-over rates,[41] votes of no confidence[42], and high budget deficits.[43] Rep. Patricia Serpa and Rep. Charlene Lima called for the resignation of Piccola, which finally occurred in July 2019.[44][45][46]

Community service[edit]

Raimondo serves as vice chair of the board of directors of Crossroads Rhode Island, the state's largest homeless services organization. Until 2011, she was a administrator Women and Infants Hospital and chair of its Quality Committee. She has served on the boards of La Salle Academy and Family Service of Rhode Island.[citation needed]

Fellowships and awards[edit]

Raimondo is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and an Aspen Institute Rodel fellow. She was awarded an honorary degree from Bryant University, in 2012; and has received awards from the northern Rhode Island chamber of commerce and the YWCA of northern Rhode Island. Raimondo was elected alumni fellow at Yale, in 2014.[47]

Electoral history[edit]

Rhode Island General Treasurer Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gina Raimondo 201,625 62.1
Republican Kernan King 122,860 37.9
Rhode Island Governor Democratic Primary Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gina Raimondo 53,990 42.1
Democratic Angel Taveras 37,326 29.1
Democratic Clay Pell 34,515 26.9
Democratic Todd Giroux 2,264 1.8
Rhode Island Governor Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gina Raimondo 131,899 40.7
Republican Allan Fung 117,428 36.2
Moderate Robert Healey, Jr. 69,278 21.4
Independent Kate Fletcher 3,483 1.1
Independent Leon Kayarian 1,228 0.4
Write-ins Write-ins 739 0.2
Rhode Island Governor Election, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gina Raimondo 198,122 52.8
Republican Allan Fung 139,932 37.3
Independent Joe Trillo 16,532 4.4
Moderate William Gilbert 10,155 2.7
Independent Luis Munoz 6,223 1.7
Independent Anne Armstrong 4,191 1.1

Personal life[edit]

On November 1, 2001, Raimondo married Andrew Kind Moffit, in Providence, Rhode Island.[48] The couple have two children, Cecilia and Thompson Moffit. The family resides on the east side of Providence.[49]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Democrat Gina Raimondo becomes Rhode Island's first female governor". Yahoo News. November 5, 2014. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  2. ^ Sullivan, Sean (December 18, 2013). "Raimondo launches campaign for Rhode Island governor". The Washington Post.
  3. ^ a b Gregg, Katherine. "Raimondo to help lead Democratic Governors group". Retrieved December 5, 2017.
  4. ^ Gregg, Katherine. "R.I.'s Raimondo elected to lead Democratic governors | audio". Retrieved January 25, 2019.
  5. ^ "Gina Raimondo". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  6. ^ "Nardolillo Funeral Home Published an Obituary for Joseph Raimondo". Nardolillo Funeral Home Website. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  7. ^ "About Gina". Gina Raimondo for RI. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  8. ^ Tom Mooney. "La Salle Academy removes all photos from Wall of Notables after Raimondo controversy". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  9. ^ Stanton, Mike (April 10, 2011). "Challenging the pension system". The Providence Journal. Retrieved July 6, 2012.
  10. ^ "Six Harvard Students Win Rhodes".
  11. ^ a b Raimondo, Gina (2002). Determinants of single motherhood in the United States. (DPhil thesis). University of Oxford. OCLC 52794176. EThOS
  12. ^ a b "Gina M. Raimondo, University Leadership". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  13. ^ McDonald, Michael (January 18, 2012). "Gina Raimondo Math Convinces Rhode Island of America's Prospects". Business Week. Archived from the original on February 26, 2012. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
  14. ^ "The 2007 Life Sciences & Healthcare Venture Summit". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  15. ^ "GoLocalProv - State Pension Fund Pays $570,000 to Raimondo's Former Firm". GoLocalProv. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  16. ^ "GoLocalProv - GoLocal Voter's Guide - GT Candidates: Gina Raimondo". GoLocalProv. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  17. ^ Walsh, Mary Williams (October 22, 2001). "The Little State With a Big Mess". The New York Times. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
  18. ^ 2010 General Election Statewide Summary, Rhode Island Board of Elections, November 17, 2010.
  19. ^ "Office of the Secretary of State: Nellie M. Gorbea: State Library". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  20. ^ Corkery, Michael (July 25, 2011). "Softer Approach on Pension Problem". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  21. ^ Nesi, Ted (January 31, 2012). "Providence pension tab tops $900M with lower investment rate". WPRI. Retrieved July 6, 2012.
  22. ^ Sardelli, Melissa (May 23, 2011). "Report reveals scope of pension crisis". WPRI. Archived from the original on October 18, 2011. Retrieved October 14, 2011.
  23. ^ McDonald, Michael (January 10, 2012). "Gina Raimondo Math Convinces Rhode Island Of America's Prospects With Debt". Bloomberg. Retrieved July 3, 2012.
  24. ^ Gregg, Katherine. "Report claims R.I. employee pension system 'mismanaged', has 'squandered billions'". Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  25. ^ "RI pension fund again lags its peers with return of 11.1% - Blogs". Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  26. ^ Edward "Ted" Siedle (April 16, 2013). "Rhode Island Pensioners 3% COLA Will Go To Pay Wall Street 4%+ Fees". Forbes. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  27. ^ “Press Release: Ocean State Investment Pool Open to Municipalities”, Rhode Island Office of the General Treasurer, April 23, 2012.
  28. ^ "State launches investment pool with Fidelity". PBN. March 24, 2012. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  29. ^ “Press Release: State Increases Transparency, Launches Investor Relations Portal", Rhode Island Office of the General Treasurer, July 14, 2011.
  30. ^ "R.I. launches site on state's financial information". PBN. July 15, 2011. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  31. ^ Stanton, Mike (August 3, 2013). "In hedge fund world, transparency takes a hit". The Providence Journal. Archived from the original on November 10, 2013.
  32. ^ Marcello, Philip (April 18, 2012). "'Payday' loan rates assailed". The Providence Journal. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  33. ^ Fitzpatrick, Ed (March 25, 2012). "Military shows way on payday loans". The Providence Journal. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  34. ^ Raimondo, Gina M. "Op-ed: Protect R.I. from these abusive lenders". The Providence Journal. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
  35. ^ "Democrat Gina Raimondo becomes Rhode Island's first female governor". Reuters. November 4, 2014. Retrieved April 15, 2015.
  36. ^ She didn’t win big. But Raimondo’s reelection signals continuity amid rocky Rhode Island politics
  37. ^ a b Nesi, Ted (February 14, 2017). "Health Secretary Elizabeth Roberts Resigns". CBS 12. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  38. ^ Pina, Alisha (February 17, 2017). "R.I. Gov. Raimondo, Deloitte CEO discuss state computer woes at Calif. conference". The Providence Journal. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  39. ^ Davis, Katie (November 14, 2019). "NBC 10 I-Team: RI's Health Secretary Elizabeth Roberts resigns". NBC News. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  40. ^ a b c Doiron, Sarah (August 20, 2018). "DCYF report: 8 child fatalities, 23 near fatalities in RI over two-year span". CBS 12 News. Retrieved November 22, 2019.
  41. ^ Resende, Patricia (March 23, 2017). "RI Child Advocate recommends system overhaul after deaths of four children". NBC 10 News. Retrieved November 22, 2019.
  42. ^ "DCYF Director responds after union's 'no confidence' vote". NBC 10 News. November 21, 2019. Retrieved November 22, 2019.
  43. ^ "Rhode Island DCYF projects $18M budget deficit". WPRO/Associated Press. May 6, 2019. Retrieved November 22, 2019.
  44. ^ Kalunian, Kim (July 10, 2019). "DCYF Director Piccola to leave post". CBS 12 News. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  45. ^ "DCYF director steps down". NBC 10 News. July 10, 2019. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  46. ^ Mooney, Tom (July 10, 2019). "DCYF Director Trista Piccola to depart after tumultuous 2½-year tenure". The Providence Journal. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  47. ^ "Board of Trustees: Current Trustees". Retrieved September 13, 2018.
  48. ^ "WEDDINGS - Gina Raimondo, Andrew Moffit". The New York Times. December 2, 2001. Retrieved February 19, 2015.
  49. ^

External links[edit]

Party political offices
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Frank Caprio
Democratic nominee for Governor of Rhode Island
2014, 2018
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Preceded by
Jay Inslee
Chair of the Democratic Governors Association
Succeeded by
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