COLUMBUS, Ohio (FOX19) - Gov. Mike DeWine announced Thursday that Dr. Amy Acton will be stepping down from her position as director of the Ohio Department of Health.
The governor says that she will be taking on the role of Ohio's Chief Health Advisor.
“In her new role, she will take a comprehensive and holistic approach to address health and well-being for all Ohioans. In addition to advising on health issues, she will continue to focus on the COVID-19 crisis, while remaining committed to the vision of the Ohio Department of Health,” DeWine said.
The governor praised Dr. Acton for her work on the coronavirus pandemic.
“Her knowledge, compassion, and determination have set an example for all of us,” DeWine said.
Dr. Acton was named to her position with the ODH on Feb. 26, 2019.
According to the ODH website, Dr. Acton has more than 30 years of experience in medical practice, government and community service, healthcare policy and advocacy, academic and nonprofit administration, consulting, teaching, and data analysis.
“When I was elected Governor, I knew that I wanted a Director of Health with a strong public health background, someone who had a passion for public health, and someone who could talk to Ohio citizens in a candid way about health issues,” the governor said.
“Let me say how very grateful for Dr. Acton’s selfless and tireless service to the people of Ohio as our Department of Health Director,” DeWine said. “No one is more passionate about public health than Dr. Amy Acton. She always puts the health and safety of Ohioans first and foremost.”
DeWine says that General Counsel for the Ohio Department of Health, Lance Himes, will be serving as the interim director.
The department’s website says Himes has worked there for more than 15 years.
Before becoming general counsel, he got his law degree from the University of Cincinnati and practiced law in the area for seven years, focusing on environmental matters, the department said.
One of his significant achievements includes the legal implementation of Ohio’s smoke-free workplace law and rules.