Ruth Ann Jones
Hometown: Dover, Del.
Role: Controller General, Delaware General Assembly
Years of legislative service: Four
NCSL connection: Jones is a 2020 graduate of NCSL’s Legislative Staff Certificate Program.
One thing she loves about her state: “That it is small! You can go anywhere in the state and will always run into someone you know.”
Why did you choose to work at the legislature?
After several years in local and state executive branch government offices, I chose to work for the Legislature because I wanted to be part of the whirlwind of activity that makes up Legislative Hall in Dover. Strangely, the budget process is something I immediately fell in love with, and I much prefer being a part of the budget-writing process versus the budget-implementation process!
What skill or talent are you most proud of?
Delaware’s Legislature is small in comparison to others, with only 62 members. However, as a nonpartisan fiscal officer, trying to make sure all 62 members’ budgetary requests, fiscal research and related inquiries are considered and represented fairly is a task unto itself. While it is impossible to make everyone happy, I take great pride in being able to close out each fiscal year knowing I’ve managed to fairly address all members’ interests, regardless of party affiliation.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
That in life, integrity is the only form of currency. In the legislative world, your word, the accuracy of your information and the consistency of you work ethic are the only ways to success.
Who or what inspires you?
I am surrounded by a circle of strong women who inspire me every day. Through motherhood, demanding careers, financial hardships and even a pandemic, every one of them keeps getting up and keeps powering the world. They take care of their families, they exceed expectations in the workplace, and they do it without a single complaint. They just do whatever needs to be done. They raise the standard for me and everyone around them every day.
What are you currently reading/listening to/watching?
I am currently listening to the “We Can Do Hard Things” podcast and watching reruns of “The Office.”
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
For its “Staff Snapshots” series, State Legislatures News is asking legislative staff about their role in the legislature. If you’d like to suggest a staffer for this series, please email Holly South at NCSL.