Today, I proud to announce the appointment of Austin Beutner as First Deputy Mayor and Chief Executive for Economic and Business Policy. Through this newly created position, he will drastically change the City's approach to job creation and economic development. It's a huge task, and one of the utmost importance; I am confident Austin up for the challenge. He has a real vision for economic development and job creation in Los Angeles -- but more importantly, he has the know-how and wherewithal to make this vision a reality. His appointment is the first step towards a total refocusing of economic development and job creation in LA.
Austin is man who has the rare combination of public and private sector experience. A son of a school teacher and manufacturing engineer, Austin began his career in the private sector. At the age of 29, he became the youngest partner ever at The Blackstone Group, one of the world's leading investment firms. In 1994, he transitioned into the public sector by working at the US Department of State in Russia following the collapse of the Soviet Union. There he led a team, which helped the struggling Russian people in their transition to a market economy. He is also the co-founder of the investment banking firm Evercore Partners, where he created a world-class financial services firm.
With Austin at the helm, we will change our approach to economic development by leveraging every resource, tool and asset at the city's disposal to create jobs. Austin will be given a large portfolio with unprecedented oversight of City resources. He will have a direct line of authority over the Department of Water and Power, the Port of Los Angeles, and economic development and business policy issues at Los Angeles World Airports.
He will be charged with creating new markets for emerging industries such as high tech, bio-tech, and clean technology and he will focus on encouraging local preference for Los Angeles businesses to ensure that LA tax dollars are being spent right here in Los Angeles. And on his first day, he has already saved us money by agreeing to work for the high salary of one dollar per year!
I want to thank Austin for accepting this position and giving back to LA, the City he calls home and the City he loves. I'm confident that Austin will set L.A. on-course toward progress and prosperity long into the future.