Boasting “a new Philadelphia,” Michael Nutter was inaugurated as the city’s 98th mayor last month.
Nutter envisioned the number of residents with college degrees doubling, the dropout rate being cut in half and the homicide rate dropping by 30 percent to 50 percent, he said in his inaugural address. A crime plan to accomplish his latter goal was released last week by Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.
Aside from tackling key issues facing the city in his first weeks of office, Nutter continued to make appointments to his administration.
Formerly of Temple and a lifelong resident of Philadelphia, Catherine M. Paster made the switch from a university administrator to a mayor’s official.
Paster, appointed as the first deputy finance director, joined another former Temple administrator, Clarence Armbrister, who was inaugurated as Michael Nutter’s chief of staff in January.
While talks about her becoming a city employee began in November, her position was not finalized until December, Paster said. Her appointment was then announced along with other senior positions in mid-January following Nutter’s inauguration.
“It wasn’t that I had any bad feelings about Temple or anything like that when I decided I wanted to go, but I saw this as a great opportunity to work for a new administration,” Paster said.
Finance director Rob Dubow was appointed by the mayor from eligible candidates selected by the Finance Panel. Once appointed, Dubow assumed the task of filling positions like the revenue commissioner, city treasurer and his deputies, which included Paster. She previously worked with Dubow, who reached out to her offering the job of first deputy.
But this is not Paster’s first job for the city. Prior to joining Temple, she briefly served in former Mayor John F. Street’s administration as acting budget director and deputy director in the Capital Budget Office from April to June of 2000. There, she was involved in developing the city’s $2.7 billion annual operating budget and $1.6 billion annual capital budget.”
Paster first came to Temple in 2000 as the director for capital budget and space programming. Her focus was on the capital budget and capital planning impact on the operating budget.
Following the creation of the Office of Management Analysis in late 2003, Paster was appointed as its head and the assistant vice president in what is now know as the Office of the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.
As assistant vice president, Pastor analyzed efficiency in various departments and oversaw the operating budget of departments and finances for the university’s major initiatives such as the planning of the TECH Center, Alter Hall and the Tyler School of Art.
After parting from Temple, Paster said she would miss the people the most at the university.
“The people [at Temple] are easy to work with,” she said. “They kind of become like a second family to you. There’s always a lots of support and I think I’ll miss that the most.”
Even so, Paster said she felt that the opportunity to work for the city in the new administration was too great to pass.
“They have a lot of things they want to get done,” she said. “They have a lot of momentum. I just wanted to work with that. It’s an exciting time for the city, and I just wanted to be a part of it.”
Amanda Snyder can be reached at email@example.com.