Matt Cox is Chief Deputy to Member Gaines and is responsible for ensuring that constituents receive the highest level of service and assistance from the Board of Equalization. He has 20 years of experience in government, politics, and communications.
Day to day, Matt oversees staff in both the northern and southern California offices and advises Member Gaines on Board policy and processes, general tax administration, tax appeals, tax policy changes, county assessor issues, personnel matters, legislative measures, media relations, educational and outreach opportunities, and constituent inquiries.
Matt began his political career as a Policy Fellow at the Pacific Research Institute in 2001. He moved to the state Capitol in 2004 where he worked as a speechwriter for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for three years. In 2007, he took a position as an Advisor at the California Integrated Waste Management Board and, in 2009, he was hired as a Policy Advisor to the Meg Whitman for Governor 2010 campaign. In 2011, he became the Senior Policy and Communications Advisor to Senator Ted Gaines and then joined the team of the Klamath River Renewal Corporation as their Director of Communications when Senator Gaines moved to the BOE in December 2018.
Matt is a graduate of California State University, Sacramento where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Government. Outside the office, he is an avid golfer and enjoys spending time with his wife and three children.
Located in the Southern California office, Barbara Buus oversees constituent affairs for Member Gaines. She is responsible for helping constituents resolve tax-related issues and served in the same position from 2011-2018 for Member George Runner.
Prior to her career at the BOE, she worked for the Automobile Club of Southern California for 38 years. She filled a variety of positions involving research and administrative duties relating to customer requests. She also assisted in various campaigns over the years, ranging from local races to state Assembly and Senate campaigns.
Born in Whittier, California, Barbara resides in Lancaster with her husband of 40 years, Douglas. They have two adult children, Adam and Trena, son-in-law Waseem, and grandsons Myles, Zeke, and Riggs. Barbara was chosen as a 2014 Honorary Commander at Edwards Air Force Base for the 445th Flight Test Operations. Outside the office, she leads a women's Bible study and enjoys quilting.
Lee Williams is Senior Analyst to Member Gaines and is responsible for providing advice on Board meetings, property tax matters, appeals hearings, and regulatory and policy issues.
Lee served in similar positions from 2003-2018 for Member Bill Leonard, Acting Member Barbara Alby, and Member George Runner.
Prior to the BOE, Lee spent more than 25 years working in the private sector for various manufacturing, distribution, international shipping, and accounting firms. He is a Certified Public Accountant and holds a Master of Science from the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie-Mellon University and a Bachelor of Science from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.