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Dr. Harry Chen, Agency of Human Services, Interim Commissioner of Department for Children and Families

Submitted by matt.stirnweis… on Tue, 08/24/2021 - 11:30

Dr. Chen served as medical advisor to Vermont on the state’s response to COVID-19 and to the opioid epidemic. He was the Chair of the Vermont Covid Vaccine Implementation Advisory Board. In 2020-2021 he served with the CDC foundation as a Senior Advisor, supporting HHS Region 3’s Covid response.

In 2018 through early 2020, he was Executive Director of the Center for Health and Wellbeing at the University of Vermont and the University’s Senior Public Health Officer. He spent a year in Uganda (2017-18) where he co-led the country’s first Emergency Medicine Residency as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Global Health Service Partnership.

Dr. Chen was Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Health from 2011 through early 2017. He served as Acting Secretary of the Agency of Human Services in 2014.

From 2012-2017, Dr. Chen served on CDC’s Board of Scientific Counselors Office of Infectious Disease and chaired its Food Safety Working Group. He was on the Board of Directors of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO). He has spoken and written on health care reform and public health issues regionally and nationally.

An emergency physician at Rutland Regional Medical Center for over 25 years, Dr. Chen was Medical Director from 1998-2004. He is on the clinical faculty at the University of Vermont College of Medicine and served as Vice Chair of the University of Vermont Board of Trustees. In 2002, Dr. Chen was elected to the Vermont House of Representatives, where he served until 2008.

Dr. Chen earned his medical degree and completed his residency in emergency medicine at the Oregon Health Sciences University School of Medicine, serving as Chief Resident. In 2017, he was awarded the Charles A. Preuss Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Dr. Chen joined the board of the Nature Conservancy, Vermont Chapter in 2021.

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