Executive Director & Chief Executive Officer
Office of the Executive Director
Scott Pattison serves as executive director and CEO of the National Governors Association (NGA), the bipartisan organization of the nation’s governors.
The group speaks with a collective voice on a wide range of issues—everything from health and education to cybersecurity, energy and transportation—and works to influence the federal government on innovative ideas that can be implemented nationwide. NGA seeks innovative solutions to today’s most pressing public policy challenges, identifying those exciting solutions happening every day at the state level.
Pattison works with governors to identify and prioritize issues facing states, identifies challenges and solutions to those challenges and oversees the day-to-day operations of the association. He brings a wealth of pioneering experience in tackling trade issues; financial and resource planning; and understanding the nuanced relationship between state and federal governments, especially in how budgets can be drivers of success in achieving results. He’s frequently interviewed by news organizations, including The New York Times, NPR and The Washington Post, about public policy issues.
Prior to joining NGA, Pattison served for over 14 years as director of the National Association of State Budget Officers, supporting governors’ chief financial officers and budget directors by providing expert analysis to guide state budget practices and decisions.
He started his career in the federal government at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the late 1980s. At the FTC, Pattison held roles as attorney-advisor, special assistant and staff attorney.
Following his tenure at the FTC, Pattison served as the executive director for the National Consumer Coalition, where he honed skills in nonprofit management and developed partnerships with members of Congress. Pattison also served as state budget director and head of the Virginia Department of Planning and Budget, as well as counsel in the office of the Virginia Attorney General.
Pattison understands the crucial role education plays at all levels of public service. He recently served on the board of Old Dominion University and is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Richmond. He is also a fellow with the National Academy of Public Administration, serves on the board of the Center for State and Local Government Excellence and is a former chair of the Association for Budgeting and Financial Management.
A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of George Washington University, Pattison went on to receive his law degree from the University of Virginia.
Scott grew up in Virginia and Washington, D.C.