Inslee Appoints Jilma Meneses Secretary of State Department of Health and Human Services


Governor Jay Inslee today appointed Jilma Meneses secretary of the State Department of Health and Human Services. She replaces Don Clintsman who had been acting secretary since May.

Meneses is currently the Executive Director of Catholic Charities of San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo, where she leads the strategy, management and operations of 30 direct social service programs for children, families, seniors, people with disabilities and HIV / AIDS survivors. The CCSF has a budget of over $ 57 million and serves over 60,000 people.

Prior to joining the FLSAC, Meneses was Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel at Concordia University in Portland, Oregon. She was also Acting Dean of the University’s Faculty of Law. Meneses worked as director of diversity at Portland State University.

At Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Meneses was Director of the Department of Risk Management, prior to that she was Director of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity.

For 15 years, she volunteered as Executive Director and General Counsel of Our Family in Africa based in Camas to support children in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She began her career in Oregon’s Tri-County Metropolitan District (Tri-Met), first as a Legal Coordinator and Legislative Assistant, then as Director of Civil Rights and Compliance.

Meneses has resided in Washington for 25 years and is raising his family in the Camas area.

“Jilma has decades of experience leading complex organizations providing health and human services. She is a transformational leader who has demonstrated that she can implement strategic and operational changes while advancing the mission and creating a dynamic and supportive culture for people, ”said Inslee. “I am pleased that she brings her dedication, passion and varied experience to benefit the people of Washington State. I look forward to working with her and welcoming her to my practice. I thank Don d ‘have stepped in as Acting Secretary and know he will continue to serve DSHS with distinction. “

“I want to express my deepest gratitude to Governor Inslee for giving me this opportunity to make a greater impact in the lives of our fellow Washington citizens. It is an honor to join the dedicated leadership of the Department of Health and Social Services Under It will be a privilege to work with this accomplished and caring community that has demonstrated compassion and unwavering commitment to Washingtonians most vulnerable, ”Meneses said.“ I am touched by the work of DSHS. and all that has been accomplished under some of the most difficult circumstances most of us have ever encountered. I look forward to walking with you on the next trip. “

Meneses received his law degree from Lewis & Clark Law School and his BA from the University of California at Berkeley.

With a mission to transform lives, DSHS is Washington’s largest agency in state, with a biennial budget of $ 16 billion, nearly 16,000 employees and 23,000 contracted service providers. The department serves some 2.4 million Washington residents each year with a wide range of programs and services, including long-term care, behavioral health assistance, child and child support. family, vocational rehabilitation and employment, food and cash assistance.

Meneses’ appointment takes effect on January 3, 2022.

Photo by Jilma Meneses


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