CSAC Bulletin Article

Governor Newsom Appoints New Director of Department of Health Care Services

June 18, 2020

The Governor’s office recently announced the appointment of Will Lightbourne to serve as Director of the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS).

Mr. Lightbourne has an extensive background in health and human services at the state and local level. Most recently, Mr. Lightbourne served as the director of the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) from 2011 to 2018. Under his leadership, CDSS oversaw massive policy changes, such as the Continuum of Care Reform, and led important departmental changes which prioritized stakeholder engagement and partnership. Mr. Lightbourne also has widespread county experience in the City and County of San Francisco and Santa Clara County, and Santa Cruz County, where he held leadership roles within the social service departments.

The partnership between the state and our 58 counties is critical to the delivery of services to Californians in need. Mr. Lightbourne’s extensive background in California’s safety-net programs –which are administered at the local level by counties – will surely prove to be an asset to not only the department, but also the Californians counties serve.

CSAC looks forward to working closely with Mr. Lightbourne in the coming years on critical health and behavioral health issues of importance to counties. His appointment will go before the Senate Rules Committee for confirmation.

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