Governor Murphy Takes the Oath of Office

January 18, 2018

Makes appointments for key commissioners

On January 16th, Phil Murphy was sworn in as the 56th Governor of the State of New Jersey.  In his inaugural address, he noted that “a stronger and fairer New Jersey is rooted in an economy that creates better jobs and provides higher wages...and, which remembers that we all have value and we all can contribute, including, and especially, the differently abled.”  Although his term just began, Governor Murphy has been hard at work filling key cabinet positions over the last few weeks. On January 3rd, Governor Murphy appointed Carole Johnson and Christine Norbut Beyer as Commissioners of the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Department of Children and Families (DCF), respectively. Both appointees have significant experience in healthcare and social services, which should serve them well in these critically important positions.

Johnson, who will oversee the Department of Human Services, has worked at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the George Washington University Center for Health Policy Research. Most recently, Johnson served on the White House Domestic Policy Council health team under President Obama.

Beyer is familiar with the Department of Children and Families, having led the Division of Youth and Family Services, from 2008 to 2010, and serving as Assistant Commissioner for the Department from 2010 to 2011. Beyer returns to New Jersey from her most recent position as Senior Director at Casey Family Programs, a national nonprofit dedicated to improving child welfare services.

In addition to the DHS and DCF appointments, Governor Murphy has nominated Dr. Shereef Elnahal to be the next health commissioner and Lamont Repollet to head the Department of Education.

The constitutionally-required Senate approval of these appointments is expected shortly. We look forward to working with the new administration to improve services for children and adults with autism.