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Robert Larkin Doar is a former Commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration (HRA). He was appointed to the position by Mayor Michael Bloomberg on January 8, 2007. He maintained the Administration’s focus on work, placing over 75,000 recipients of benefits into jobs each year and expanding access to work support programs like Food Stamps and the Earned Income Tax Credit. Commissioner Doar also worked to promote responsible fatherhood, both through increased collection of child support payments, and by creating programs like NYC DADS, which encourage fathers to take an active role in their children’s emotional lives.
Within the Administration he worked to promote staff advancement and leadership, reduce operating costs, and bring more of HRA’s services online. He was the 30th Commissioner of the Human Resources Administration.
Doar was born in Washington, DC, the son of former Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights John Doar, an instrumental figure in the American civil rights movement, and Anne Leffingwell Doar. He has one sister, Gael, and two brothers, Michael and Burke.
He attended St. Ann’s School, Phillips Academy (Andover) and Princeton University (A.B. 1983). After college he began working at the New York City Office of Business Development, helping small businesses relocate to lower rent areas of the city. He then moved to Washington, DC to become Deputy to the Editor-in-Chief of The Washington Monthly, a public policy magazine, where he worked with a number of well known journalists including current Editor-in-Chief Paul Glastris, Jason DeParle, Matthew Cooper, and Nicholas Lemann.
He returned to New York to become editor of the Harlem Valley Times in Dutchess County, and then worked as Assistant Vice President of the First National Bank of Hudson Valley.
In May, 1995 he became the Deputy Commissioner of the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance’s Division of Child Support Enforcement. In 2003, Governor George Pataki appointed him as Commissioner of the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance.
He has received the American Society for Public Administration’s New Public Administrator Award (2000), the Commissioner's Distinguished Service Award from the Administration for Children & Families, Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement, Department of Health & Human Services (2002), and the National Child Support Enforcement Association’s State Leader of the Year Award (2006). In June, 2008 he received the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty’s City Leadership Award.
He lives in Brooklyn, New York with his wife Sara Doar and their four children.