Cambio ready for the challenge of running town's finances

Cambio ready for the challenge of running town's finances

NORTH PROVIDENCE - Don't let his youthful looks fool you. Justin Cambio is a veteran with extensive experience running both public and private financial systems.

Cambio, 34, says he's excited to take the reins of the North Providence Finance Department after working most recently in the controller's office in Providence, where he was partially responsible for a budget seven times the size.

Unlike Providence, his new employer is "on solid financial footing," said Cambio. Though there are plenty of challenges as North Providence continues its climb back, he is confident that with the right moves, the town will stay on the right track.

Cambio said it's "refreshing" to be in a community where the budget is such a "straightforward" document, unlike Providence where the budget was "more of a working document that never came in that accurately."

North Providence residents should expect another budget surplus for the fiscal year that ended June 30, said Cambio, and much of the credit for that surplus should go to Mayor Charles Lombardi, a "hands on" chief executive he says wants local finances monitored on a periodic basis so there "are no surprises."

"You always know where you stand and you know what the objective is," he said.

A Providence resident, Cambio was one of three applicants for the top North Providence finance position, according to Lombardi.

He was recommended by Thomas Massaro, a North Providence resident who served in the position for one year after former Finance Director Walter Edge stepped down. Massaro never planned to stay in the position for very long, according to Lombardi.

Cambio brings "youthful experience," said Lombardi, and was the immediate choice of all those who interviewed him, especially Massaro.

Lombardi thanked Massaro for his contributions to the ongoing mission of "righting this leaning financial ship" in North Providence and helping to secure what looks like another budget surplus.

North Providence's financial structure is "improving daily," said Lombardi, and Massaro had a lot to do with making that happen.

Lombardi said he is "very satisfied" with Cambio's performance in the few weeks since he accepted the position, at an annual pay of $80,000.

"He's the right person at the right time," said the mayor. Cambio is "young enough to be my son," said Lombardi, and he has a "very bright future" in the financial world.

Cambio said he's loved working with Lombardi so far, especially being someone who has "all my cards" out on the table like the mayor does. "You know where you stand at all times," he said.

When he's not digging into the financial books, Cambio enjoys exercising, long walks, and watching sports.