David Eichenthal is a Managing Director with the PFM Group’s Management and Budget Consulting practice. He works on projects nationwide to help improve the efficiency and effectiveness of municipal government clients, with a focus on fiscal turnarounds.
As the founding Executive Director of the National Resource Network, Mr. Eichenthal has led a consortium of for-profit and non-profit organizations (including PFM) funded by the federal government and philanthropy to provide cross cutting and collaborative technical assistance to empower local leaders in America’s most economically challenged cities. Since its launch in 2014, the Network has partnered with Mayors and City Managers in 59 cities in 22 states – from Waco to Wilkes Barre -- on projects designed to increase economic competitiveness, ranging from multi-year financial plans to support for downtown economic development. Governing called the Network’s recommendations for the City of Providence “a template for action for just about any fiscally struggling local government.”
In addition to his leadership of the Network, Mr. Eichenthal has led the development of financial plans in Houston, Memphis, Petersburg, Youngstown and operational studies in Cuyahoga County (OH), Mobile County (AL) and Shelby County (TN). In 2017, Eichenthal was tapped by outgoing New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to oversee the City’s transition to a newly elected Mayor.
Mr. Eichenthal is also the founding Executive Director of PFM’s Center for Justice and Safety Finance. The Center stands at the intersection where policy, operations, and finance meet – building a 21st Century criminal justice and public safety system for cities, counties, and communities across the country. Mr. Eichenthal has served as an expert witness for and consultant to the City of New Orleans on costs and operational issues related to the consent decree for the Orleans Parish Prison. He is also a Senior Research Fellow at the New York University School of Law Center for Research in Crime and Justice and previously served as a member of the Board of the Center for Employment Opportunities, one of the leading organizations in the nation working to address employment challenges for offenders returning from prison to the community.
Prior to joining PFM, Mr. Eichenthal served as President and CEO of the Ochs Center for Metropolitan Studies, a non-profit policy research institute that worked with local governments, foundations and non-profit organizations in the Southeast and across the nation. He was also a Nonresident Senior Fellow with the Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program.
Mr. Eichenthal served in a series of senior positions in local government over fifteen years in both Chattanooga and New York. Under then-Mayor Bob Corker, he was finance officer and director of performance review for the City of Chattanooga where he oversaw the development of the City’s $150 million budget, implementation of one of the nation’s first 311 systems, creation of a citywide performance management initiative and managed 175 employees. In New York, Mr. Eichenthal was Chief of Policy and then Chief of Staff to the Public Advocate (the city’s second highest elected official), Assistant Inspector General for Policy in the New York City School Construction Authority and Assistant Deputy Comptroller for Policy/Counsel for Special Projects.
Mr. Eichenthal is the co-author of The Art of the Watchdog: Fighting Fraud, Waste, Abuse and Corruption in Government (SUNY Excelsior Press, 2014), cited by The New York Times as “required reading for any government executive.” His work has been published in the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Governing, Government Finance Review, Hartford Courant, Justice Quarterly, New York Daily News, New York Newsday, Prison Journal, Providence Journal, Public Administration Review, Public Management, Rockford Register, The Hill and The Washington Post.
Mr. Eichenthal has taught courses in American government, public policy, public administration and criminal justice at New York University, Georgia State University, Baruch College and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He is a graduate of the University of Chicago and New York University School of Law and was a Harry S Truman Scholar.