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Arkansas governor names Mark White to head Department of Human Services

The office of the Arkansas Department of Human Service in Little Rock.
The office of the Arkansas Department of Human Service in Little Rock.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Thursday his appointment of Mark White of Bryant as the Secretary of the Department of Human Services. He will replace Cindy Gillespie, who resigned last week.

White currently serves as Chief of Staff and Chief Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Officer. He represents DHS before the Arkansas Legislature and serves as a primary point of contact for legislators, elected officials, lobbyists, and other state agencies. He was also appointed by the Governor to serve on the Arkansas Health Services Permit Commission.

Since he first joined DHS in 2013, he has served in a variety of capacities including work in the Secretary’s Office, the Office of Chief Counsel, and the Division of Aging, Adult, and Behavioral Health Services.

In 2017, Hutchinson appointed him to the Governor’s Transformation Advisory Board, which advanced the reorganization of state government culminating in the Transformation and Efficiencies Act of 2019.

He is a graduate of Ouachita Baptist University and the University of Arkansas School of Law.

“I have the utmost confidence in Mark to lead the Department of Humans Services. His breadth of experience, working relationship with the legislature, and his close working relationship with transfer work within DHS makes him the perfect fit to lead a department that provides critical services to children, senior citizens, and provides health care needs to the most vulnerable Arkansans.” Hutchinson said.

“I am grateful to Governor Hutchinson for the opportunity to lead the Department of Human Services as we serve the people of Arkansas. The mission of DHS is to improve the quality of life for all Arkansans by protecting the vulnerable, fostering independence, and promoting better health,” White said. “Secretary Cindy Gillespie has led DHS in making great strides to pursue this mission, and I look forward to working with the Governor and the Arkansas General Assembly in continuing that good work.”

White’s term will begin October 8, 2022 and his salary will be $201,700.

This story comes from the staff of Talk Business & Politics, a content partner with KUAR News. You can hear the weekly program on Mondays at 6:06 p.m.