SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the appointment of California Health and Human Services Agency (CHHS) Undersecretary Michelle Baass as Director of the California Department of Health Care Services, filling the role held by outgoing Director William Lightbourne since June 2020. CHHS Deputy Secretary of Program and Fiscal Affairs Marko Mijic has been appointed to serve as Undersecretary of the Agency.
“Director Lightbourne stepped up to serve California during a worldwide pandemic, bringing with him a lifetime of extensive public health leadership and knowledge,” said Governor Newsom. “I thank Director Lightbourne for his work to keep Californians healthy and safe during this time, and his decades of unwavering dedication to improving the lives of Californians.”
“I’m grateful to Michelle and Marko for taking on their new roles in the administration, where they will continue to help our state navigate the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic, while also working to better serve communities throughout the state. Californians are fortunate to have their expertise, invaluable counsel and deep commitment to public service supporting our ongoing efforts to build a healthy California for All,” said Governor Newsom.
Michelle Baass, 47, of Sacramento, has been appointed Director of the California Department of Health Care Services. Baass has been Undersecretary of the California Health and Human Services Agency since 2018. She was Deputy Secretary of the Office of Program and Fiscal Affairs at the California Health and Human Services Agency from 2017 to 2018 and Deputy Director and Principal Consultant at the California State Senate Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review from 2012 to 2017. She was Deputy Director and Principal Consultant at the California State Senate Office of Research from 2008 to 2012. Baass was a Senior Fiscal and Policy Analyst at the California Legislative Analyst’s Office from 2004 to 2008 and a Manager and Consultant for Accenture from 1996 to 2004. Baass earned a Master of Public Policy and Administration degree from California State University, Sacramento. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $224,912. Baass is a Democrat.
Marko Mijic, 34, of Sacramento, has been appointed Undersecretary of the California Health and Human Services Agency. Mijic has been Deputy Secretary of Program and Fiscal Affairs at the California Health and Human Services Agency since 2019, where he has served in several positions since 2015, including Acting Deputy Secretary and Assistant Secretary of Program and Fiscal Affairs. Mijic also served as Acting Director of the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development from 2020 to 2021. He held several positions at the American Heart Association, including Manager of Licensing and New Ventures from 2014 to 2015 and Manager of Government Relations from 2013 to 2014. He held several positions at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, including Special Assistant from 2011 to 2013 and Senior Staff Assistant from 2009 to 2011. Mijic earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the American University School of Public Affairs. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $205,608. Mijic is a Democrat.