MADISON (AP) – An aide to Gov. Scott Walker who got caught up in a secret investigation into illegal campaigning has landed a new state job with a hefty raise.
The Wisconsin State Journal reported Thursday that Cindy Archer has been hired as chief information technology officer for the state public defender’s office.
Her hourly salary is $54.34 an hour, good for $113,459 a year. That’s an 11.7 percent increase from the $48.62 per hour she was making previously as the office’s administrative services director and 31 percent more than her predecessor, Gail Zaucha, earned. Zaucha left the post in March.
Archer was one of Walker’s top aides when he served as Milwaukee County executive. After he became governor she became deputy secretary of the Department of Administration, where she made $124,000. She resigned in August 2011 and took a $25,000 pay cut to become a legislative liaison for the state Department of Children and Families.
FBI agents raided Archer’s home in September 2011 as part of a now-closed John Doe probe into illegal campaign work in Walker’s county office. Archer was part of an inner circle of county and gubernatorial campaign staff that regularly traded messages using private emails through a secret router set up in Walker’s office to get around Wisconsin’s open records laws. The investigation led to six convictions. Neither Archer nor Walker was charged with any wrongdoing.
Archer moved from DCF to the public defender’s office in September.
The office’s spokesman, Randy Kraft, said Archer’s new salary reflects a general raise for state employees and a market rate raise some information technology workers got. Zaucha would have been eligible for that raise this year, Kraft said.
He also noted Archer has led information technology operations in the past and that she’s been filling in for Zaucha since March and managing the office’s six information technology staffers. Her salary is in the range of what the office would pay if it hired someone from outside the agency, he added.
Most state workers saw only a 1 percent raise this past year. The average pay among state information technology mangers last year was $49.77 an hour.