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Mayor picks Burke as Medford budget director

Posted by Marcia Dick  January 11, 2011 02:00 PM

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sburke.jpgMedford Mayor Michael J. McGlynn has tapped veteran City Councilor Stephanie Muccini Burke to fill the city's top financial post. She would replace Richard Lee, who died last week from cancer, as the city's Director of Budget and Personnel.

The City Council must first approve a home rule petition to have the state Legislature allow the appointment, because state ethics laws require elected officials wait at least one year before accepting another job in municipal government. The council will consider the request at its meeting at 7 p.m. next Tuesday at City Hall.

McGlynn could not immediately be reached for comment. In a statement, McGlynn cited Burke's 16-year tenure on the council, saying she had  " ... mastered the city budget. She would be a tremendous asset as the budget director."

In a  telephone interview, Burke said she is sensitive to the timing of her appointment. "It's a hard time for everyone at City Hall," Burke said, reached today at her job at a Winchester party planning company. "Richard was a wonderful man, who served the city well. These are big shoes to fill."

Burke said she will not attend next week's council meeting to avoid any possible conflict of interest. She said she looks forward to the challenge of steering Medford through choppy financial waters.

"I am eager to jump in. It certainly will be challenging, but I am familiar with how things go on in municipal finance, as well as the finances of private corporations."

Burke is the chief financial officer of Peterson Party Center, a special events rental company. A graduate of Medford High School, she has a bachelor's degree in accounting from Suffolk University in Boston and a master's degree in taxation from Bentley University.  She has been a certified public accountant since 1987.

She will have to resign her City Council seat if she is appointed as budget director.

Kathy McCabe can be reached at kmccabe@globe.com.

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