Lance Himes (Photo: Ohio Department of Health)
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Gov. John Kasich today named Lance Himes the new director of the Ohio Department of Health.
Himes has served as the interim director for the department since March 31, when the former director, Rick Hodges, opted to leave the administration after three years in the role.
Himes previously served as general counsel for the department, where he has worked as an attorney for the past 13 years. He also filled in as interim director of the department for six months in 2014.
He is the second consecutive director of the department who is not a physician. His predecessor was the director of the Ohio Turnpike, director of marketing for the Fulton County Health Center and director of the Community Hospitals of Williams County.
By law, the director of the department does not need to be a physician but must have extensive public health experience.
Himes, who is a member of the Ohio Public Health Association, specializes in environmental health and public health compliance issues with ODH and in 2014 helped coordinate the state’s response to Ebola.
Prior to his work with ODH, Himes was a lawyer in Cincinnati for seven years.
He received his bachelor’s degree in business and geography from Wittenberg University and his law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law.
Himes was not available Tuesday for interviews.