BRADENTON, Fla. — Mary-Margaret Collier, the long-time director of state and local bond finance in Tennessee, has announced plans to retire May 31.
Collier’s departure will cap a 16-year career with the state, and 30-year career in public finance.
“We have appreciated the leadership and dedication Mary-Margaret has contributed to our office during the past 16 years, and thank her for her service to the state of Tennessee,” state Comptroller Justin Wilson said in a memo to market participants.
The long lead time announcing her retirement is due to the fact that the comptroller wants to be transparent and eliminate any surprise about the prospective turnover, Collier said in an interview Wednesday. Her retirement date coincides with the end of the annual legislative session.
Collier, 65, said she is retiring to spend more time with her ailing mother, who will be 93 on Jan. 24, and her husband, Jack, to whom she has been married for 16 years. The Colliers are eventually planning to move to Texas, near where their children live.
“I have been part of a wonderful journey for these past 30 years,” she said. “I have loved every minute of it, but I have never really taken a break.”
Collier said she may also think about applying for a position on the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board.
During her career in public finance, Collier has been an active participant in issues involving the bond market, as well as professional organizations like the Government Finance Officers Association, the Tennessee GFOA, and the State Debt Management Network, which is an affiliate of the National Association of State Treasurers.
As the liaison to the state comptroller’s office, Collier kept the TGFOA up to date on legislative matters affecting municipal finance in Tennessee as well as potential federal regulations impacting debt-related activities, said TGFOA president Jim Demming.
“Her service has certainly strengthened the knowledge and capabilities of our TGFOA membership in municipal finance matters in Tennessee,” Demming said. “Her love of public finance and the willingness to share valuable information is second to none. We will miss her greatly.”
Sandi Thompson will become director of the Office of State and Local Finance on June 1. Thompson currently is the deputy director.