Ronald Stroman will become deputy postmaster general on April 4. (U.S. Postal Service)
Capitol Hill staffer Ronald Stroman is set to become deputy postmaster general April 4.
His appointment marks the first time since 1971 the U.S. Postal Service has filled the No. 2 position from outside.
With congressional action critical to the agency's hopes of beginning to solve its financial problems, "Stroman's depth of understanding of the legislative process, as well as his demonstrated ability to work with members on both sides of the aisle, makes him an important addition to the USPS team as we work through the many issues facing us today," Louis Giuliano, chairman of the postal Board of Governors, said in a statement.
Stroman will oversee all outreach and communications with congressional and mailing industry leaders. In 2009 and 2010, he served as staff director for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee under then-Chairman Edolphus Towns, D-N.Y., according to congressional pay records collected by the website LegiStorm.com, He remains on the panel through April 1 as counsel, a spokeswoman said.
The committee's new chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., is pressing the Postal Service to clamp down on pay and benefits.
"We worked with Ron Stroman on important oversight efforts last Congress and look forward to working with him on the many challenges facing the U.S. Postal Service in the year ahead," said Issa spokesman Ali Ahmad.
The deputy's job had been vacant since Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe moved up in December.
Besides seeking lawmakers' assent to end most Saturday delivery, Donahoe wants a break on a $5.5 billion prepayment for retiree health benefits due this September, as well as a refund on billions of dollars in pension overpayments.
As deputy postmaster general, Stroman will also focus on improving customer service. He will serve on the board and on Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe's executive leadership team. The vice presidents of government relations, corporate communications and consumer and industry affairs will report to him.
"A manager and a leader, Ron's career is a testament to his ability to work in a bipartisan fashion and communicate effectively through challenge and change," Donahoe said. "I look forward to working closely with Ron as we continue our evolution as a forward-thinking, fast-acting company with outstanding service as its foundation."
A 1974 graduate of Manhattan College in New York, Stroman received a law degree from Rutgers University in 1977 and has worked steadily in various federal jobs since 1978, according to the Postal Service. USPS spokeswoman Joanne Veto said he was managing director of the Government Accountability Office's office of opportunity and inclusiveness before going to work for the House oversight committee, and also served as attorney adviser at the Housing and Urban Development Department.