Hot Sheet

Labor veteran Ellen Golombek moves on, draws praise from Hick

Author: Dan Njegomir - September 28, 2017 - Updated: September 28, 2017

ellen_golombek_-_dol.jpg
Colorado Department of Labor and Employment chief Ellen Golombek at a 2015 press conference with Gov. John Hickenlooper at the Capitol. (cpr.org)

Ellen Golombek will be leaving her role as executive director of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment at the end of October, the office of Gov. John Hickenlooper announced. The office issued a statement from Hickenlooper today crediting Golombek with having “transformed” the labor department since taking the helm in 2011. The statement said she will “pursue an opportunity with a national workforce advocacy agency.”

Hick praised Golombek at length:

“She brought together coalitions to advance workforce solutions, led regulatory reforms on behalf of business and created a culture of engagement and accountability within CDLE. She will be missed.”

According to the press release, Golombek implement a number of reforms during her tenure, including leading a 2012 effort to issue $625 million in unemployment compensation bonds so that the unemployment insurance trust fund would be solvent. That move turned off the solvency surcharge that had been assessed against Colorado businesses since 2004 and eliminated the interest payments on money borrowed from the federal government to pay unemployment benefits.

She has a long history in organized labor. She previously served 10 years as president of the Colorado AFL-CIO and before that worked with the Service Employees International Union. She was also National Political and Field Director for Planned Parenthood in Washington, D.C.

Dan Njegomir

Dan Njegomir

Dan Njegomir is the opinion editor for Colorado Politics. A longtime journalist and more-than-25-year veteran of the Colorado political scene, Njegomir has been an award-winning newspaper reporter, an editorial page editor, a senior legislative staffer at the State Capitol and a political consultant.