Cynthia Lorenzo stepping down as interim director of Department of Economic Opportunity

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Florida’s former head of unemployment compensation who led the division during a major transition announced she will be stepping down to spend more time with her young children, reports Michael Peltier of the News Service of Florida.

Cynthia Lorenzo, former head of the Agency for Workforce Innovation and interim director of the newly created Department of Economic Opportunity, submitted her resignation to the agency’s new executive director on Monday. Her last day will be July 6.

“I truly cherish my responsibilities as a mother of two young boys,” Lorenzo said in a letter Monday to Hunting Deutsch, DEO executive director. “Over the years, it has been a tremendous challenge to maintain the delicate balance of career and family. I am looking forward to spending part of my summer off with them before returning to my career in the fall.”

As former AWI director, Lorenzo was at the helm of an agency that handled Florida’s unemployment compensation program, including the recession that followed Florida’s housing crash. The office was subsumed into DOE following the election of Gov. Rick Scott. The agency’s mission was also modified to focus, at least publicly, on job training.

Deutsch, who began in April following the resignation of Doug Darling, said he accepted Lorenzo’s resignation with “much reluctance.”

“Cynthia has been an outstanding leader during her time with our Department and her knowledge and leadership skills will be missed,” Deutsch said. “Her assistance and guidance throughout my transition has been invaluable.”

Lorenzo’s resignation is the latest in a series of changes made since the DOE was created. Darling became the new agency’s executive director, a post he held for eight months. He resigned in January.

Nancy Blum-Heintz, chief communications officer took a job with Enterprise Florida and was replaced by Carolyn Gosselin.  Inspector General James Mathews retired and was replaced by Joe Maleszewski.

Deutsch most recently worked as president of BankUnited Financial Services and executive vice president of wealth management at BankUnited Financial Corp. from 2006 to 2009.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.