Gov. Reynolds appoints Kelly Garcia to serve as interim director at IDPH

This content provided by the Office of the Governor of Iowa, Kim Reynolds as a press release.

Today, Governor Reynolds appointed Kelly Garcia to serve as interim director of the Iowa Department of Public Health. She will continue to serve as director of the Department of Human Services (DHS). 

“Kelly Garcia has done an outstanding job at DHS, and her expertise and work ethic will bring great value to IDPH,” said Gov. Reynolds. “This is an opportunity to increase cooperation and collaboration between these two agencies to better serve Iowans. I also want to express my continued gratitude to IDPH, DHS employees for their efforts during these unprecedented times.”

Governor Kim Reynolds appointed Garcia to oversee DHS in November 2019. She was unanimously confirmed by the Iowa Senate on February 26, 2020. Before moving to Iowa, Kelly served in a series of executive positions at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC). This included serving as a deputy executive commissioner at HHSC. Garcia is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin and received her MPA at The Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. She is married to attorney Dan Garcia, and they have two young children.

Garcia replaces Gerd Clabaugh, who is retiring on July 31st. 

This content provided by the Office of the Governor of Iowa, Kim Reynolds as a press release.

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As Iowa’s 43rd Governor, Kim Reynolds is determined to make sure that Iowa’s success is every Iowan’s success. Whether it’s preparing Iowans for cutting-edge careers, fighting for education, improving healthcare and mental health access, or empowering our rural communities, Kim’s priorities are making a difference in all four corners of the state. Her vision keeps Iowans at the center of all decisions, especially in the area of fiscal responsibility. Kim knows that when Iowa taxpayers are able to keep more of their money, great things happen. She also believes in redemption. Kim’s justice reform initiatives carefully balance second chances with victim rights. As Governor, Kim’s strong voice for international trade, agriculture, and advanced manufacturing is opening new markets and maintaining relationships with leaders in China, Mexico, Canada, Israel, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, Germany, Brazil and Argentina, to name just a few. Although she’s traveled the world telling Iowa’s story, Kim is still a small-town girl at heart with common-sense values. These principles are reflected in the Governor’s Empower Rural Iowa initiative and Future Ready Iowa. At age 57, Kim earned a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University. Then, nearly two years later, on Nov. 4, 2018, she was elected by Iowans to become their first woman Governor. Family means everything to Kim and her husband, Kevin. They have three daughters (Jennifer, Nicole and Jessica) who are happily married, and Kim and Kevin love spending time with their 10 very active grandchildren.