Meet Our Staff

Mark Haveman

Mark Haveman is executive director of the Minnesota Center for Fiscal Excellence. He joined the organization in 2002 and took over the organization’s leadership role in 2008. He is the author of numerous research and education publications on state and local tax policy and government finance. Mark was a member of Governor Pawlenty’s 21st Century Tax Reform Commission, served four years on the Board of Trustees of the Governmental Research Association, and has served on policy and project advisory boards for the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Institute for Standards and Technology, as well as for several state agencies, academic institutions and private foundations. He received his B.A. from Calvin College and an MBA from the University of Michigan.

About Mark

  • Currently reading: Annals of a Former World
  • What I'm watching: University of Michigan sports of all kinds
  • What I do when I’m not working:  Resuscitating my golf game
  • Most people don’t know that: I've hiked most of the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada

Bob DeBoer

Bob DeBoer joined MCFE as research director in September 2019. Bob holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of Minnesota, but was diverted from his planned profession decades ago.  While working as a session-only employee in the Minnesota House of Representatives Research Department, and later in the Public Information Office, Bob developed an interest in tax policy while covering the House Tax Committee and worked with House Research staff to publish a study on the accuracy of the property tax “runs” provided to legislators each year in Session Weekly.  After a stint as a suburban reporter and writing for a research journal, Bob returned to the Minnesota House as committee administrator for the tax and local government committees.  This was followed by four years as communications director at the Office of the State Auditor and 10 years as policy director at the Citizens League, where property taxes were often pondered and Bob produced three annual property tax reports.  Bob has led and served on many committees, task forces, councils, and working groups related to tax and fiscal policy.

About Bob

  • Currently reading: Jazz by Toni Morrison
  • Last movie I watched: The Two Killings of Sam Cooke
  • What I enjoy when I’m not working: Live music, running, documentaries
  • Most people don’t know that: I once worked as a blast furnace operator in a local lead foundry

Charisse Tester

Charisse Tester started at the Minnesota Center for Fiscal Excellence in 2021 as the office administrator. She comes to us with a wide range of experience including bookkeeping at the Women's Foundation of MN and inventory control administration at the Mazda North American Operations corporate office in California. With a love of the arts, it comes as no surprise that she has had her own business selling her paintings and refurbished furniture. She also is working on completing her B.A. in Business Administration at Metropolitan University. 

About Charisse

  • Currently reading: Success is a Choice: 10 Steps to Overachieving in Business and Life by Rick Pitino 
  • Currently watching:  American Horror Story (my son and I will be starting this soon!)
  • What I do when I’m not working:  Work on home projects (my townhome is about half done being re-decorated) and hang out with my 2 teenage boys and 2 rabbits!
  • Most people don’t know that:  I used to do welded metal art when I was a pre-teen.