Gov. Tim Walz is tapping Assistant Revenue Commissioner Robert Doty to lead the state's top tax agency.

Doty, who previously served as executive director of the Minnesota State Lottery, will take over as commissioner on Nov. 12, the governor announced Friday. Doty replaces Cynthia Bauerly, who was the state's longest-serving revenue commissioner until she stepped down last month.

"Robert Doty's experience balancing budgets and bringing a diverse range of voices to the table have prepared him to lead Minnesota through the difficult budget years we're facing," Walz said in a statement announcing the appointment.

Doty will assume a critical role as the state faces a projected $2.4 billion deficit for the current budget cycle and potential $4.7 billion deficit for the following two years. State finance officials have attributed the budget deficit to revenue losses stemming from the coronavirus pandemic.

"My top priority will be to provide a fair and transparent revenue system that can help our state plan for our future and weather the economic downturn caused by COVID-19," Doty said in a statement.

The Department of Revenue handles more than 30 different types of taxes and collects more than $25 billion per year.

Bauerly served as revenue commissioner for six years, starting in the administration of former Gov. Mark Dayton. On Friday, Bauerly predicted that Doty "will continue the Department's mission by ensuring all Minnesotans have access to the opportunities in our tax code, enforcing fairness among taxpayers, and leading with integrity and transparency at every turn."

In addition to the Minnesota State Lottery, Doty has also served in executive positions for the Harvest Network of Schools, Minneapolis Public Schools and Dunwoody College of Technology.

Twitter: @smontemayor