Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service

Environmental Health Officer Professional Advisory Committee

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Greetings from your New Chief Professional Officer!

By RADM Kelly Taylor, Chief Professional Officer

Hello EHOs! For those of you who already know me, I look forward to working with you in my new capacity as Chief Environmental Health Officer. For those of you who do not know me, I’ll introduce myself.

I have been a Commissioned Officer for 28 years and all of that time has been with the Indian Health Service. I am currently the Acting Chief of Staff, but my position of record is the Director of the Division of Environmental Health Services in Rockville, Maryland. Because Indian Health Service has historically hired many EHOs and because of my role as the EH Services Director, I have often been engaged in the Commissioned Corps policies and initiatives that impacted our officers. I have served on appointment boards for 17 years and have worked closely with many of the Professional Advisory Committee (PAC) Chairs and Chief Professional Officers (CPOs) since the early 1990s.

I served two terms on the EHOPAC beginning in 1997 when it was called the Sanitarian PAC. I was on the PAC when we changed the appointment standards to require specific degrees from specific accrediting bodies and changed the name of the category to what it is today. I co-chaired the Orientation and Mentoring Subcommittee for six years and was an active participant on the Marketing and Recruitment and Career Development Subcommittees for eight years. After completing my terms on the PAC, I have continued to assist the PAC Chairs and CPOs wherever I was needed, keeping up with policies, trends, challenges, and opportunities.

When I was interviewed for the position of Chief EHO, the Surgeon General asked about my vision for the Corps and the EHO category. I don’t think there’s anything very profound about my vision, but I’ll share it with you so you know where I would like us to go. I envision the Corps as being the recognized health advocate, promoter, and protector of the Nation.

We will no longer have to justify our existence as a valuable public health investment because the Nation is well aware of our value. I envision the EHO category as being an elite cadre of skilled professionals who are major supporters of the Office of the Surgeon General’s focus on making prevention and health promotion the backbone of a strong and healthy America.

I encourage our category to increase its efforts to demonstrate our impact on the Nation’s health and therefore the Nation’s economy and security as highlighted by Vice Admiral Adams’ priorities.

That’s more than enough about me. I want to hear more about the work you do every day, the challenges you face, and your ideas about demonstrating our impact. I am honored to serve as the 11th Chief EHO. I want to thank CAPT Alan Parham for all he’s done for the category during his leadership of the PAC and as Chief EHO and CDR Jill Shugart for her leadership while PAC Chair. I look forward to working with the EHOPAC and I wish the new leadership team a productive new year!

 

Page Last Modified on 4/10/2018

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