TENNESSEE Gov. Bill Haslam today announced Nashville business executive Bob Rolfe as commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD). Rolfe's Linkedin is here.
Rolfe is to join the Haslam Administration on March 1. He succeeds Randy Boyd, the founder and chairman of Knoxville-based Radio Systems Corp., who recently stepped-down from his ECD role. [Boyd is widely believed to be preparing for a run for Governor of Tennessee in 2018.-Ed.]
Rolfe, 56, has more than three decades of experience in business and investment banking in Tennessee. [The ECD Commissioner in recent years also has served as chairman of Tennessee Technology Development Corporation, TTDC, dba Launch Tennessee.-Ed.]
"Bob Rolfe has spent his career growing companies and creating jobs, and he will bring incredible experience and energy to our work of making Tennessee the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs and ensuring that success is felt throughout the state," Haslam said. "Bringing someone of Bob's caliber to this position says a lot about the momentum we have right now in Tennessee, and I know that will continue to flourish under his leadership."
Rolfe comes to the administration from Medical Reimbursements of America (MRA), a 250-employee Franklin company that provides specialty reimbursement solutions for more than 500 hospitals and health systems across the country. As chairman and CEO, he led the development and rollout of the first technology-based solution dedicated exclusively to the resolution of complex accident claims.
[Two days ago, MRA announced selling to Riverside, the Boston-based private-equity firm.-Ed.]
In 2011, Rolfe co-founded West End Holdings, a Nashville-based private equity partnership that acquires and manages underperforming companies, transforming their operating and financial performance. He spent the first 18 years of his career as an investment banker at J.C. Bradford and Co.
"As a lifelong Tennessean, it is an honor to have the opportunity to serve our governor and the citizens of our great state," Rolfe said. "After spending many years working in the business community, I look forward to applying my energy and efforts toward recruiting additional capital investment and jobs across the state of Tennessee."
A native of Nashville, Rolfe received his executive MBA from the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt and his bachelor's degree from the University of Alabama. An active member of the Nashville community, he currently serves on the advisory board of Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt.
He and his wife, Kathy, live in Nashville and have three adult children, Robert, Carly and Leslie. They are members of First Presbyterian Church, where Rolfe has served as an elder for more than 20 years. [###]