Novak Consulting Bringing solutions into focus

Mark Olson, Associate


Mark Olson,

  • Education
    Master of Public Policy, University of Chicago
    Bachelor of Arts, University of Illinois – Urbana
  • Industry Tenure
    25 years
    Consulting, 16 years
    State and Local Government, 9 years

Mark joined The Novak Consulting Group in 2013, bringing his 25 years of consulting and local government service to the TNCG team. As a consultant, Mark’s work includes financial and management audits, organization and management consulting, productivity and benchmarking studies, and cost analysis and process improvement projects for state and local governments.

His clients have ranged from large state agencies, to small independent local governments across the nation. Areas of work include financial and operational reviews in service areas including financial management, human resources, information technology, planning, social service delivery, public works, public safety, parks and recreation, school administration, and libraries. He employs a collaborative approach with clients in developing information, assessing alternatives and producing solutions. Mark also employs a variety of tested study approaches that are customized to meet the particular objectives of the project or client needs.

Many projects take the form of a single agency review to meet a variety of project purposes. Mark has led or participated in these reviews in virtually every area of government service provision at the local level. These reviews involved issues such as staffing level reviews, strategic planning, budgeting, resource allocation, performance measurement, process studies, best practices and benchmarking analyses, compliance reviews, alternative service delivery, and operational improvement. These projects have involved service areas such as finance, accounting, purchasing, human resources, planning, community development, public works, parks and recreation, police, fire, emergency medical services, emergency communications, school administration, library administration, and museum administration. This wide-ranging issue and agency background provides him with a breadth of knowledge, skills, and abilities that he applies to every project. In addition to comprehensive government reviews, Mark has also led multiple-agency reviews to identify opportunities for shared services or alternative service delivery. These projects have included emergency communications reviews, inter-jurisdictional service sharing, and consolidation.

Prior to consulting, Mark served in a variety of planning, budgeting, and management roles in state and local government. He served as the Budget Officer and Deputy Treasurer for the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, Illinois and as the Budget Development Coordinator for the Illinois Department of Transportation. Mark began his government service career as an operations and capital program analyst with the Illinois Office of Management and Budget, a branch of the Executive Office of the Governor.

Mark earned a master’s degree in public policy studies with an emphasis on financial and operations analyses from the Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies at the University of Chicago. Mark also holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Illinois – Urbana.