Ernie Almonte. Screen shot from Almonte2014.com
Former Rhode Island Auditor General Ernie Almonte announced Thursday he will run for General Treasurer in 2014. Almonte had previously said he would run for Governor, but did not specifically make mention of why he made the switch in an email announcing his candidacy for General Treasurer.
"I have listened to your input and as always, I have made a decision based on logic," he said in the statement.
Almonte told WPRO that he declared his candidacy for Governor early because he's a firm believer that "you don't learn to swim on the beach."
After meeting with constituents, he realized there were too many strong, potential candidates in the Governor's race, and thought he could accomplish more if he ran for General Treasurer instead.
Almonte, a Democrat, will face previously declared candidate Frank Caprio, a former General Treasurer who is currently unaffiliated.
"As a lifelong Rhode Islander, I firmly believe our state is at a crossroad in its ability to create and sustain a prosperous future," said Almonte in a statement released early Thursday.
According to his news release, Almonte plans to use his background in finance to develop a team of experts to assist municipalities, develop a financial education system for the residents of Rhode Island, address identity theft and "implement a sound financial investment strategy."
"As a CPA, I’ve based my life and career around four principles: Integrity – Reliability – Independence – Accountability. These core principles will guide my decision-making as General Treasurer, and lay down firm roots for the financial future of our state," said Almonte in a statement. "Together, we can right the ship and put Rhode Island back on a track toward future prosperity."
Almonte, a Johnston native, earned both a bachelor's and master's from Bryant University. He also graduated from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives fellows program.
Currently, Almonte is an adjunct professor in advanced management and organizational strategies in Brown University's graduate program.
Almonte became the state's Auditor General in 1994, and held the position until 2010.
He currently has $157,078.40 in cash in his campaign coffers according to the Rhode Island Campaign Finance website.