Treasurer won’t seek re-election after 20 years in office

State Treasurer Denise Nappier

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP/WTNH) — State Treasurer Denise Nappier has announced she won’t seek re-election to a sixth term in office.

The Democrat made the announcement Wednesday.

She became the nation’s first African-American woman elected as a state treasurer in 1998, and the first woman elected treasurer in Connecticut history. She defeated then-incumbent Republican State Treasurer Paul Silvester, who later was convicted of federal corruption charges.

Nappier, who previously served for 10 years as Hartford’s treasurer, heads an office overseeing $63 billion in state funds, including $34 billion in state pension and trust funds, which have grown from $19 billion during her tenure.

She defeated Republican Timothy Herbst in 2014 by fewer than 19,000 votes out of more than 1 million.

She will end her tenure next January as the longest-serving treasurer in state history.

Multiple Connecticut politicians released statements following Nappier’s announcement.

Governor Dannel Malloy stated, in part:

Denise Nappier’s public service and dedication to the state of Connecticut is second to none. From the moment she made history as the first African American woman elected to statewide office in Connecticut, Denise has managed the state’s assets with distinction, routinely surpassing investment-return benchmarks. But perhaps more importantly, she restored dignity and professionalism to an office that desperately needed leadership.”

State Comptroller Kevin Lembo released a statement, which read, in part:

It has been a great honor to work alongside someone whose service helped inspire my own. As the longest serving Treasurer in modern Connecticut history, Treasurer Nappier’s devotion to her work has sustained throughout her career as she has fought for good corporate governance, accountability and the rights of consumers and workers.”

Connecticut Democratic Party Chairman Nick Balletto also issued a statement, which read, in part:

State Treasurer Denise Nappier has been been an exceptional public servant and true leader for our party during her time in elected office as Hartford Treasurer and then State Treasurer.”