Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens announced today that Drew Erdmann, a partner at McKinsey and Company, will become the state's Chief Operating Officer, a new position Greitens touts as being designed to make government work better for the state's citizens.
"Citizens wait in too many long lines, and people are forced to fill out too many forms to do basic things," Greitens said. "Small businesses are being choked by regulations and taxes. Drew is going to wake up every day with one simple mission: make Missouri's government work better for you."
In announcing his choice at a ceremony in Jefferson City, Greitens noted that Erdmann spent the last decade improving governments around the country, and has advised businesses and government entities in aerospace and defense on strategy, operations, and organizational design.
The position of state COO isn't named in either Missouri's Constitution or state laws. Greitens created the COO position through an executive order, which calls for the official to work with state agencies to cut redundant programs and improve efficiency.
Austin Chambers, Greitens' campaign manager and now senior adviser, told reporters last month: "Our COO, just as a reminder — Eric talked about this many times during the campaign — is going to come in and help the governor transform government. He's an outsider who's going to come in and help shake things up, and bring overhaul and efficiency to a state government that badly needs it."
Erdmann previously worked as the National Security Council's director for Iran, Iraq and strategic planning in 2005 under former Republican President George W. Bush. He worked as a member of the policy planning staff of the State Department from 2001-03.