Cheryl Musgrave is an American politician and public servant residing in Indiana. She previously served as Director of the Department of Local Government Finance in the Mitch Daniels administration and has held various local offices in Vanderburgh County. She is best known for championing government efficiency, innovation, and use of the internet.
Musgrave's family has long been involved in public service. After her grandfather's B-17 crashed during a mission in World War II, he was a prisoner of war in Nazi Germany. Her father continued the family's military service as a Sergeant in the United States Air Force, serving in bases in Europe and Alaska during the height of the Cold War. After her family settled in Greencastle, Indiana, both of her parents entered politics. Her father served as multi-term Putnam County Council President, and her mother was elected township trustee-assessor in Putnam County, and as County Chairman of her party. Cheryl married her husband Robert Musgrave, now an Evansville attorney, in 1979, the year both she and her husband graduated from DePauw University. They moved to Evansville in 1983, and have made their home in the city's historic Downtown. She has two children, Paul Musgrave, a professor and expert in American foreign policy matters, and Margaret.
Musgrave was first elected Vanderburgh County Assessor in 1994. When she arrived, the assessor's office staff still used typewriters and White-Out to process its paperwork. She streamlined her office and she adopted a hands-on approach to assessing, earning her Level I and Level II assessing certification from the state. She offered her staff nationally-recognized training courses as well. Thanks to these improvements, Vanderburgh County was often the first county in the state to complete its reassessment.
Musgrave's creative uses of the Internet resulted in a first-of-its-kind website that provides citizens constant access to both property records and sales information.  The site went online in 1997, and has significantly altered the real estate industry in Vanderburgh County. Musgrave also took the lead in developing the county's Geographic Information System, an online map used by both the private and public sectors.
Musgrave was asked to serve on the Legislative Committee of the Association of Indiana Counties and was Legislative Co-Chairman of the County Assessor Association. Many of her suggestions and innovations have been incorporated into Indiana law.
Musgrave was elected Vanderburgh County Commissioner for district three in 2004, and roughly a year later became President of the Board of Commissioners. She was praised for her efforts to support victims of the Evansville Tornado of November 2005, and also for accomplishments in economic development, improved government performance and road projects.
Department of Local Government Finance
In the summer of 2007 Governor Mitch Daniels appointed Cheryl as Commissioner of the state Department of Local Government Finance in an effort to respond to widespread outrage and protests at local property tax assessment increases. Cheryl reigned in the growth of local governments’ budgets. She also led reforms in consolidating assessing at the county level. During her tenure, the legislature and a series of public referenda eliminated all but 13 of the state’s 1,016 township assessors.
In 2010 Musgrave ran for a seat in the Indiana House of Representatives in District 77 but narrowly lost to Democrat Gail Riecken by a margin of 7,547 to 7,379 (51% to 49%).