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De Blasio Names Anthony Shorris as First Deputy Mayor

By Colby Hamilton | December 4, 2013 1:59pm
 Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris
Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris
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DNAinfo/Colby Hamilton

CIVIC CENTER — Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio announced three picks for his top positions Wednesday — giving a first look into his nascent administration.

De Blasio tapped Anthony Shorris — a former member of the Ed Koch administration, whose history inside the mayor's office dates back to 1978 — to serve as his First Deputy Commissioner. Shorris will oversee all of the city agencies and administrators, with the exceptions of police commissioner and schools chancellor, and will be the primary channel through which de Blasio runs the city, he said.

“There’s going to be a lot that happens in this city, where decisions have to be made very quickly, and when it’s an important decision, a strategic decision, the buck stops right here,” de Blasio said, pointing to himself. “I want everyone to know where the buck stops in all those other situations: It stops with Tony Shorris.”

Shorris, who was Koch's deputy budget director before becoming his finance commissioner, went on to serve in state government, first as the first deputy executive director at the Port Authority from 1991 to 1995, and then as the head of the agency from 2007 to 2008.

“I’ve been at this work a long time, and there’s just very few people that have this kind of range of experience. It’s absolutely extraordinary,” de Blasio said.

Shorris, who stood alongside de Blasio at the announcement, said, “This mayor was elected with a very clear mandate from the people of New York City; a mandate to enact a bold and progressive vision. I couldn’t be more honored or more excited to serve on that great mission. I will do everything I can to move that agenda forward."

De Blasio's two other appointments — Emma Wolfe and Dominic Williams — were key members of de Blasio’s Public Advocate staff, as well as his successful campaign for mayor.

Wolfe, who de Blasio tapped to be his director of Intergovernmental Affairs, was credited as being instrumental in helping him in his successful bid for City Hall.

“There are very few minds that I’ve ever met who can compete with Emma Wolfe when it comes to the whole extraordinary dynamic of New York City and New York State political and public life, and making sense of it all,” de Blasio said.

Additionally, Williams, who most recently served as de Blasio’s chief of staff in the public advocate’s office, was tapped to be Shorris’ chief of staff.

De Blasio remained mum on his picks for other key positions, including police commissioner and schools chancellor.