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Office of the Governor
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Contact: Governor's Press Office
Friday, September 13, 2019 (916) 445-4571

Governor Newsom Announces Appointments

SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the following appointments:

 

Sonia Angell, 53, of Woodside, New York, has been appointed director of the California Department of Public Health. Angell has been an assistant clinical professor of medicine and an assistant attending physician at New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Hospital since 2014 and from 2005 to 2011. She has been an independent consultant to the Pan American Health Organization since 2017. She served as deputy commissioner for prevention and primary care at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene from 2014 to 2019 and was a senior advisor for global noncommunicable diseases and chief and founder of the Global Noncommunicable Disease Unit at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2011 to 2014. Angell was founding director of the Cardiovascular Disease Prevention and Control Program at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene from 2004 to 2011. She was a primary care physician at the Packard Community Clinic from 2003 to 2004. She was lead field organizer and trade policy coordinator for the Federation for Industrial Retention and Renewal from 1991 to 1993, a support services coordinator and instructor for the National Puerto Rican Forum Inc. in 1991 and a Peace Corps teacher and trainer volunteer in Nepal from 1988 to 1990. Angell earned a Master of Public Health degree in epidemiology from the University of Michigan School of Public Health and a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $275,650. Angell is a Democrat.

 

David R. Duncan Jr., 58, of Penryn, has been appointed director of the Emergency Medical Services Authority. Duncan has been medical director and executive medical officer at Air Medical Group Holdings and REACH Air Medical Services since 2008. He served as medical director at the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection from 2010 to 2019. Duncan has served as a staff emergency physician at the Veterans Administration Hospital, Mather since 2016. He was a staff emergency physician at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital from 1995 to 2015, at Mercy San Juan Hospital from 1996 to 1999 and at the University of California, Davis Medical Center from 1994 to 1996. He is a member of the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine, American College of Emergency Physicians and American Medical Association. He earned a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and completed emergency medicine training at the University of California, Davis Medical Center. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $235,008. Duncan is a Democrat.

 

Jennifer Hernandez, 39, of Sacramento, has been appointed deputy director of the Family Engagement and Empowerment Division at the California Department of Social Services. Hernandez has been associate secretary for farmworker and immigrant services at the Labor and Workforce Development Agency since 2015. She was Western Region director at the AFL-CIO from 2013 to 2015 and Western Region campaign coordinator from 2010 to 2013. She was a partner at Cultivo Consulting from 2008 to 2010 and civic engagement director at the California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation from 2007 to 2008. Hernandez was deputy director of Communities United to Strengthen America from 2006 to 2007, special assistant to the president at Voice for Working Families from 2004 to 2006 and driver’s license campaign manager at United Farm Workers, AFL-CIO from 2002 to 2004. Hernandez earned a Master of Public Policy degree from George Mason University. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $164,256. Hernandez is a Democrat.     

 

Mayra E. Alvarez, 38, of Los Angeles, has been appointed to the First Five California Children and Families Commission. Alvarez has been president of The Children’s Partnership since 2015. She was director of the State Exchange Group for the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services from 2014 to 2015. Alvarez was associate director of the Office of Minority Health at the U.S. Department of Human Services from 2013 to 2014 and director of public health policy in the Office of Health Reform at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from 2010 to 2013. Alvarez was a legislative assistant for U.S. Senator Richard J. Durbin from 2007 to 2010 and for U.S. Congresswoman Hilda L. Solis from 2006 to 2007. Alvarez was a legislative fellow for U.S. Senator Barack Obama from 2005 to 2006. She is a board member of the Food Research and Action Coalition, Alluma and the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights Action Fund. She is a member of the Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission. Alvarez earned a Master of Health Administration degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Alvarez is a Democrat.

 

Nancy Bargmann, 58, of Long Beach, has been reappointed to the State Independent Living Council, where she has served since 2016. Bargmann has served as director of the California Department of Developmental Services since 2016. She was associate executive director of the San Gabriel-Pomona Regional Center from 2015 to 2016 and deputy director of the Community Services Division at the California Department of Developmental Services from 2012 to 2015. Bargmann held several positions at Home Ownership for Personal Empowerment Inc. from 2009 to 2012, including executive director and business consultant, and held several positions at the MENTOR Network from 1998 to 2009, including vice president of operations, vice president of business development and California state director. She held several positions at the Inland Regional Center from 1985 to 1998, including community services director, resource manager, adult services program manager and consumer services coordinator. Bargmann earned a Master of Business Administration degree from the Pepperdine University School of Business and Management and a Master of Science degree in social work from San Diego State University. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Bargmann is registered without party preference.

 

Susan “Tink” Miller, 72, of Foresthill, has been appointed to the State Independent Living Council. Miller has been executive director at Placer Independent Resource Services since 1995. She was director of administration and finance at the Westside Center for Independent Living from 1979 to 1995. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Miller is registered without party preference.

 

Jay’Riah Thomas, 25, of Sacramento, has been reappointed to the State Independent Living Council, where she has served since 2019. Thomas has been manager of The Arc San Francisco and a summer school ISP teacher at Five Keys Charter School since 2018. She was a teacher for Fortune School of Education from 2016 to 2018. Thomas was a paraeducator for the Elk Grove Unified School District from 2013 to 2016. She is a member of Black Women of Political Action, Sacramento Chapter and the Spelman College Alumnae Association, Sacramento Chapter. Thomas earned a Master of Education degree from the University of the Pacific. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Thomas is a Democrat.

 

Ning “Jenny” Yang, 31, of Ukiah, has been reappointed to the State Independent Living Council, where she has served since 2019. Yang was vice chair of the State Council on Developmental Disabilities from 2013 to 2018. She was a student member of the California Community Colleges Board of Governors from 2011 to 2013. Yang was a box office clerk at the Ukiah Players Theatre from 2008 to 2010. She held multiple positions at Mendocino College from 2006 to 2007, including statistics tutor and teachers assistant. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Yang is a Democrat.

 

Joe Xavier, 60, of Elk Grove, has been reappointed to the State Rehabilitation Council, where he has served since 2016, and the California State Independent Living Council, where he has served since 2016. Xavier has been director of the California Department of Rehabilitation since 2014, where he has held several positions since 1998, including deputy director of the Specialized Services Division and of the Independent Living and External Affairs Division. He was owner and operator at Snack N Things from 1996 to 1998, at Skyline Food Services from 1986 to 1996 and at the Gold Star Café from 1984 to 1986. Xavier is a member of the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Association of California State Employees with Disabilities. These positions do not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Xavier is registered without party preference.

 

Jennifer Braunlin, 26, of San Francisco, has been appointed to the State Rehabilitation Council. Braunlin has been director of jobs at Best Buddies. She was deputy director at Best Buddies in 2018, where she was program supervisor from 2016 to 2018 and employment consultant from 2015 to 2016. She is a volunteer at Disability: IN Silicon Valley, the Special Olympics, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Early Childhood CARES and the Center on Teaching and Learning. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Braunlin is registered without party preference.

 

Theresa Comstock, 52, of Napa, has been reappointed to the State Rehabilitation Council. Comstock has served as executive director of the California Association of Local Behavioral Health Boards and Commissions since 2018. She was an associate at Complex Property Tax Specialist from 2009 to 2016. Comstock was Southwestern U.S. sales representative at Nikon Inc.’s electronic imaging strategic business unit from 1994 to 1995. Comstock was a co-founder and software application manager at Focused Imaging Technologies Inc. from 1992 to 1994. Comstock is a member of the Napa County Mental Health Board. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Comstock is registered without party preference.

 

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Governor Gavin Newsom
State Capitol Building
Sacramento, CA 95814


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