About us

Our Mission

Our mission is to help taxpayers file tax returns timely, accurately, and pay the correct amount to fund services important to Californians.

Our Board Members

Malia M. Cohen

State Controller
Chair, Franchise Tax Board

State Controller Malia M. Cohen was elected in November 2022, following her service on the California State Board of Equalization (BOE), the nation’s only elected tax commission responsible for administering California’s $100 billion property tax system. She was elected to the BOE in November 2018 and was Chair in 2019 and 2022. As Controller, she continues to serve the Board as its fifth voting member.

As chief fiscal officer of the world’s fifth-largest economy, Controller Cohen’s primary responsibility is to account for and protect the state‘s financial resources. Controller Cohen also independently audits government agencies that spend state funds, safeguards many types of property until claimed by the rightful owners, and administers the payroll system for state government employees and California State University employees. She serves on 70 boards and commissions with authority ranging from affordable housing to crime victim compensation to land management. Controller Cohen chairs the Franchise Tax Board and serves on the boards of the nation's two largest public pension funds, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) Boards, which have a combined portfolio of $750 billion. The Controller is one of eight statewide constitutional officials who are elected every four years in California.

As the BOE Board Member for District 2, she represented 10 million constituents living in all or parts of 23 counties extending from Del Norte County in the north to Santa Barbara County in the south. As Chair of the BOE, she led the effort to modernize California’s property tax system, provide guidance to the 58 county assessors on remote assessment appeals board hearings, and utilize property tax abatements to stimulate affordable housing. Controller Cohen also ensured that the views of all who came before the Board were considered carefully, with respect, civility, and courtesy.

Prior to being elected to the BOE, Controller Cohen served as President of the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco. As a Supervisor, she served as Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee and the Audit and Oversight Committee. During this time, she also served as President of the San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System (SFERS), which at the time was a $23 billion pension fund.

Controller Cohen has championed policies and programs that protect public health, foster economic development, promote new affordable housing, and create good jobs through protecting and expanding San Francisco’s manufacturing base. She has dedicated her career to public service, focusing on making public dollars work for all Californians.

Controller Cohen was born and raised in San Francisco and attended public schools. She received her bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Fisk University and a master’s degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University. She and her husband reside in San Francisco along with their daughter.

Antonio Vazquez

Member, California State Board of Equalization

Joe Stephenshaw

Director of Finance

Joe Stephenshaw was appointed as Director of the California Department of Finance by Governor Newsom in July of 2022. In this role, he serves as the Governor’s Chief Fiscal Policy Advisor. Prior to his appointment, Stephenshaw served in Governor Newsom’s Office as a Senior Counselor on Infrastructure and Fiscal Affairs.

Stephenshaw was Staff Director for the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee from 2017 to 2022. He held multiple positions in the California Legislature from 2008 to 2017, including serving as a Policy Consultant in the Office of the Senate President pro Tempore, a Special Advisor to the Speaker of the Assembly, and as a Budget Consultant for both the Assembly Budget Committee and the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee. Stephenshaw was a Budget Analyst for the California Department of Finance from 2005 to 2008.

Stephenshaw is a graduate of Menlo College with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He also earned a Master of Business Administration degree from California State University, Sacramento.

For more information about the Department of Finance, visit dof.ca.gov

Our Executive Team

Selvi Stanislaus

Executive Officer

Selvi Stanislaus was appointed Executive Officer of the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) on January 11, 2006.

As FTB’s fourth executive officer and the first woman to hold the post, Selvi oversees the second-largest tax department in the nation, with more than 6,000 employees in California and its three out-of-state offices.

During her time at FTB, Selvi’s achievements include:

  • Increased development of a positive workplace culture that has made FTB a destination employer,
  • Successful launch of the Enterprise Data to Revenue (EDR) Project, a technology upgrade that modernized and improved how FTB does business, and
  • Several awards, including the Public Sector Partners’ Project Leadership Award in 2014, which recognized her for EDR; the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) State Technology Innovator Award in 2013, for leadership aimed at improving citizen service, information sharing, and good government; and Public Administrator of the Year in 2013 from the Sacramento Chapter of the American Society of Public Administrators, for excellence in public management over a sustained period of time.

After graduation from the Sri Lanka Law College as an attorney at law, Selvi worked in the private sector, and thereafter in the Chambers of Sri Lanka's President's Counsel.

After establishing herself in Sri Lanka, Selvi and her husband chose to pursue the vast opportunities in the United States. They immigrated to California in 1986, where Selvi returned to law school, completing a J.D. degree with Honors and an LL.M. degree in tax law. After another period in the private sector, she joined the State Board of Equalization's legal staff in 1996, to pursue her passion in tax law. In April 2005, Selvi was appointed the Acting Assistant Chief Counsel of the Tax and Fee Programs Division of the Legal Department at BOE.

In her spare time, Selvi is actively involved in doing pro bono work in Northern California's large East Asian community. She is also a part-time professor at a local law school and local universities, where she teaches tax law.

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.

John Quincy Adams

Rachael Bruce

Chief, Audit Division

Rachael Bruce is FTB’s Chief of the Audit Division.

Rachael plans, evaluates, budgets, and develops policies for the division and its programs, including the Criminal Investigations program.

Rachael has been with FTB since 1991. Her extensive knowledge of tax audit programs came from serving as Bureau Director in various capacities within the Division, and managing and leading in several audit business areas for 30+ years. Her experience covers personal income tax, pass-through entities, federal audits, audit policy, protest resolution, financial budget operations, and human resource activities for the Audit Division.

Rachael is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting from California State University, Sacramento.

Shoot for the moon, and even if you miss, you’re still among stars.

Les Brown

Jozel Brunett

Chief, Legal Counsel

Jozel Brunett is FTBs Chief Counsel.

The Chief Counsel provides advice and counsel to the department with respect to tax matters in protest, appeals, bankruptcy, and settlement cases, the department's legislative program, tax forms, contracts, and general counsel matters, as well as the department's nontax programs. The Chief Counsel oversees the Legal Division attorneys who assist the Attorney General in court with respect to refund litigation cases, represent the department in personnel matters before the State Personnel Board, Victim's Compensation and Government Claims Board cases and other administrative proceedings, issue legal rulings and public notices, and who are responsible for the department's regulation program.

Jozel started her career at FTB in 1994, as a Tax Counsel. She has extensive experience in representing the FTB in Board of Equalization appeal hearings. She has actively participated in various key department and interagency teams. In her most recent assignment as Assistant Chief Counsel of the Tax Administration and Procedure Bureau, she represented and provided guidance to the department with respect to administrative and procedural law issues. Before joining FTB, Jozel worked in a private business litigation practice for seven years.

Jozel is a graduate of California State University, Chico with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and earned her Juris Doctor from the University of California, Davis, School of Law.

The time is always right to do what is right.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Jennifer Fowler

Chief, Accounts Receivable

Jennifer Fowler is Chief of the Accounts Receivable Management Division.

Jennifer is responsible for collection program policy and operations for delinquent business and personal income tax. The division also collects various nontax debts referred from other departments including certain court-ordered fines, fees, restitution orders, and delinquent vehicle registration.

Jennifer has worked for FTB since 1988. She began her career in the filing program. Since then she has held a variety of positions in the Filing and Accounts Receivable Management (ARM) Divisions. She has led and managed large collection programs. She directed the recovery of delinquent business entity taxes, personal income taxes, and all nontax debts (referred from 400 state and local agencies). ARM collects more than $3.4 billion and $578 million annually for the tax and nontax programs respectively.

Jennifer graduated from the California State University, Sacramento (CSUS) Leadership for Government Executives. She continues to pursue her Organizational Communication Bachelor of Arts degree from CSUS.

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

African Proverb

Jeanne Harriman

Chief Financial Officer

Jeanne Harriman is FTB’s Chief Financial Officer and the Chief of the Finance and Executive Services Division.

As chief of FTB’s Financial and Executive Services Division, Jeanne oversees FTB’s financial, legislative, statistical research, procurement, enterprise planning, risk management, and project oversight activities, and works with internal and external stakeholders to ensure that FTB optimizes our resources and operations.

Jeanne has worked for FTB since 1989. She began her career in the audit program and conducted audits in the field and from Central Office for any taxpayer type (individual or business entity), worked on protest cases, and lead review and support activities for Audit Division staff and lead numerous visionary projects. In 2009, Jeanne transitioned to the Finance and Executive Services Division and began overseeing FTB’s budget function and focused on enhancing enterprise wide operations by optimizing FTB resources. In 2014, Jeanne began serving as Division Chief of the Financial and Executive Services Division and continues to work closely with our external and internal stakeholders to provide diverse and key support services to ensure FTB’s operations are optimized and FTB can successfully implement new workloads supporting the Administration’s and Legislature’s key policy goals.

Jeanne has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting and a Master’s Degree in Taxation from California State University, Sacramento. Jeanne also is a Certified Public Accountant.

Make each day your masterpiece. Do the best you can. You can’t do anything about yesterday. The future depends on how you prepare yourself today.

John Wooden
Carol D Williams

Carol D. Williams

Chief, Administrative Services

Carol D. Williams is Chief of the Administrative Services Division.

As chief of Franchise Tax Board’s Administrative Services Division, Carol oversees all aspects of the human resource, internal audit, communications, executive and advocate services, equal employment opportunity office, organizational development and talent management, taxpayers’ rights advocate and privacy and security programs.

Carol started her career with FTB in 1992, as a tax auditor. Since that time she has held a variety of positions in the Audit, Filing, and Accounts Receivable Management Divisions. Carol has led and managed large projects including the development and expansion of e-services focusing on self-service applications for individual and business taxpayers, Court-Ordered Debt Statewide Expansion project and the department's successful Tax Amnesty project generating over $700 million.

Carol earned her Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with a concentration in accounting from San Francisco State University.

Kindness eases change. Love quiets fear.

Octavia Butler

Nadean Shavor

Chief Information Officer

Nadean Shavor is the Chief Information Officer (CIO).

As chief of FTB's Technology Services Division, Nadean leads a division of over 1,000 IT professionals responsible for the applications, systems, and services used to support the department’s current and future business needs. She establishes IT direction, sets policy in consensus with the Governance Council, and helps develop long-term strategies while making sure technology is best used to meet those strategic objectives. Nadean provides oversight to ensure the effective deployment of technology, including the Enterprise Data to Revenue 2 Project.

Nadean has been with FTB for more than twenty-five years, including 17 years in leadership roles. Prior to her CIO role, she served as FTB’s Chief Security Officer. In this role, she managed the physical security of FTB’s central office campus and twelve field offices, cyber security, and the Privacy and Disclosure Programs. In addition, she was the Agency Information Security Officer (AISO) for Government Operations Agency where she developed state-wide cyber security strategies and policies. Nadean’s previous roles in the Technology Services Division include managing FTB’s Data Center and other information technology systems and applications such as: external Internet, call center platform, human resource systems, the intranet, and three major compliance systems, in addition to several smaller systems.

There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.

Colin Powell

Roger Lackey

Chief, Filing Services

Roger is responsible for filing program policy and operations that includes processing individual and business entity tax returns and payments, administering the withholding program, detecting and preventing tax return refund fraud, identification of non-filers, and providing customer service to the public. In this role, Roger is leading the development and expansion of e- services and focusing on self-service applications for individual and business taxpayers.

Roger has over 32 years of Franchise Tax Board (FTB) experience beginning his career as a Tax Program Assistant in the Audit Division before later becoming an analyst and manager in the Legislative Services Bureau. In 2005, Roger participated in the department’s first management rotation program where he joined the Processing Services Bureau (PSB) in the Filing Division. Since that time, Roger has held a variety of leadership positions across the Filing Division including in the Filing Compliance Bureau, the Filing Services Bureau, and most recently nine years as the director of the Processing Services Bureau. Roger has led and managed a number of large projects including pipeline modernization efforts (EDR), improved refund and payment services, and most recently he led the successful implementation of Golden State Stimulus I and II serving over 11.4 million Californians. Roger is known for his operational knowledge of FTB processes and operations and his leadership in building collaborative teams to succeed in serving taxpayers and California.

Roger has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from California State University Sacramento and is a graduate of the Intergovernmental Management Program and the Executive Assessment and Development Program (EADP).

Our Foundational Principles

  • Protect the privacy and security of data entrusted to us.
  • Carry out our fiduciary responsibilities to taxpayers by managing their accounts with accuracy and financial integrity.
  • Operate with transparency to maintain public trust and confidence.
  • Conduct our business in accordance with the Statement of Principles of Tax Administration, Taxpayers' Bill of Rights, and our organizational values.

Our Values

  • Lead with Integrity and Inspiration
    As inspirational leaders, we are committed to pursue the right path, ignite ideas and innovation, communicate clear expectations, and invite everyone to maximize their potential every day.
  • Bring Our Best
    By bringing our best we exemplify honesty, credibility, and accountability. We value staff and encourage them to bring their best every day.
  • Deliver Excellent Products and Services
    Quality is best achieved through collaboration with our customers and each other. We deliver excellent products and services that meet the needs of our customers.
  • Contribute to a Caring Community
    We encourage mutual respect, kindness, and teamwork. This creates a supportive work environment that appreciates diversity and allows all of us to flourish in the community we work and live in.
  • Become Experts at What We Do
    We are motivated to continually improve and grow. We take advantage of tools and opportunities to develop in our chosen career path.

Our Goals

  • Exceptional Service
    Strive to continuously enhance our customers' experience.
  • Effective Compliance
    Fairly administer the law to ensure taxpayers file and pay the correct amount.
  • Strong Organization
    Value, invest in, challenge, and empower our employees to have an enterprise view, be experts in their field, and achieve their full potential.
  • Operational Excellence
    Optimize our processes, products, services, and resources to better serve our internal and external customers.