After more than a decade as president of the Public Affairs Research Council, Robert Travis Scott has announced he will retire at the end of the year.
Scott, who took over at the nonpartisan policy institute in January 2011, will transition to an advisory role after his retirement. In the meantime, the organization is launching a national search for his replacement.
“I could do this for years more and enjoy it,” says Scott, 64. “I’m not even close to being burned out but this is a good time to pass the reins because the organization is in good shape. I’ve gotten it to where I want it to be and now it’s ready to move to the next phase.”
Scott, who will relocate to Virginia with his wife after he steps down, has helped grow PAR and strengthen it financially. He also has been influential in its work on statewide tax reform.
During its recent session, the Legislature passed several measures that PAR has been recommending for years in its policy papers and annual guides.
Scott will stay on with the organization through October, when voters will be asked to approve several of those measures as constitutional amendments.
“I’m really proud of our continual work on the state constitution, including our annual guides to the amendments on the ballot and our groundbreaking work and recommendations for constitutional reform,” he says. “That has been a real hallmark for PAR.”
The independent organization was created in 1950 to focus on governmental accountability and transparency in Louisiana. Scott came to the organization from The Times-Picayune, where he was a business editor then capital bureau chief. His predecessors in the influential position at PAR include Jim Brandt, Mark Drennan, Jackie Ducote and Ed Steimel.
Scott’s departure and the transition will be staged in steps to ensure that new leadership is comfortably and strongly in place to carry forward PAR’s mission and educational services, the organization says.
PAR’s search committee efforts are being coordinated by Bret Pinson of Pinson & Associates. The position profile has been posted on PAR’s website at parlouisiana.org.
(Editor’s Note: This story has been revised since publication to include Jackie Ducote among past PAR presidents.)