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Grant Thornton Names Shea to Lead Public Policy Group

July 01, 2020, 08:20 AM

Grant Thornton LLP has named Robert Shea as its national managing principal for Public Policy, effective August 1, 2020. He succeeds Mary Moore Hamrick, who will retire at the end of this fiscal year in accordance with Grant Thornton’s mandatory retirement policy.

In his new role, Shea will serve as Grant Thornton’s primary liaison with members of Congress. He will also represent the firm’s policy positions with the accounting profession’s standards-setters, regulators and other policymakers. In addition, he will serve as the chair of Grant Thornton’s political action committee.

Shea will also retain his existing role as a principal in the Strategy practice at Grant Thornton Public Sector LLC.

Shea has been working to improve government performance for 25 years — including 10 years at Grant Thornton and 15 years in the federal government. Most notably, he served for six years as the associate director for the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB). While at OMB, he led an initiative to measure government programs using its Program Assessment Rating Tool. The effort received an Innovations in American Government Award from Harvard University.

Also at OMB, he oversaw programs to implement large-scale personnel reform at the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security; and he launched a federal government-wide effort to measure and reduce improper payments.

Prior to his time at OMB, Shea served as senior management counsel for the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, and, before that, as the legislative director for Congressman Pete Sessions. In addition, he has served as a professional staff member for the House Committee on Government Reform.

Shea is a leading proponent of evidence-based policymaking: He is a fellow and former chairman of the National Academy of Public Administration and he served on the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking. “It’s simple,” said Shea, “government organizations must report what outcomes they're achieving and how they're going to do better.”

According to Grant Thornton CEO Brad Preber: “Robert’s sterling credentials and track record improving federal governance make him the ideal person to represent Grant Thornton among policymakers. Moreover, he will be a leading voice for the accounting and consulting profession as it helps America surmount the historic disruptions and daunting challenges it now faces.”

Shea received a bachelor’s degree from Connecticut College and a law degree from the South Texas College of Law. He has won a range of awards, including twice receiving a Fed100 award. He has also won the Andy Barr award and the Elmer B. Staats Award for Public Accountability.

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