5 people Donald Trump may choose to head HHS
President-elect Donald Trump will be responsible for appointing a new secretary of HHS once he takes office. Here are five people rumored to be on the short list for the position.
1. Rick Bagger, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Market Access of Celegene Corp. (Summit, N.J.). Although Politico calls it a long shot, the publication named Mr. Bagger among the potential appointees for HHS secretary. He is executive vice president of corporate affairs and market access for Celegene Corp., a multinational biopharmaceutical company focused on cancer and severe immune-inflammatory conditions. Mr. Bagger also spent 16 years with Pfizer, working his way up to the senior most management team and serving as senior vice president, worldwide public affairs. He also spent two years as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's chief of staff and now leads Mr. Trump's transition team.
2. Ben Carson, MD, Former Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital (Baltimore). CNN pegs Dr. Carson as a potential HHS secretary as well as secretary of education candidate. He became notable for performing the first surgery to separate twins who were conjoined at the head and neck while at Johns Hopkins. He ran against Mr. Trump for the Republican presidential nomination with an anti-ACA platform and became a Trump supporter after dropping out of the race.
3. Newt Gingrich, Former Speaker of the House. Mr. Gingrich was speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999, representing Georgia's 6th district. He resigned in 1999 and moved on to found or chair think tanks such as American Solutions for Winning the Future and the Center for Health Transformation. Politico also reported Mr. Gingrich could be tapped for the secretary of state position as well.
4. Bobby Jindal, Former Governor of Louisiana. The Advocate pegged Gov. Jindal as a potential candidate for HHS secretary. Gov. Jindal led Louisiana from 2008 to 2016 and has previous experience as a U.S. congressman and chairman of the Republican Governors Association. He became the secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals in 1996 and appointed as the youngest president of the University of Louisiana System in 1999. President George W. Bush appointed him principal advisor to the HHS secretary in 2001. Gov. Jindal ran against Mr. Trump for the GOP nomination.
5. Rick Scott, Governor of Florida. Gov. Scott is the 45th governor of Florida and a rumored candidate for the HHS secretary spot, according to Politico. He started the Columbia Hospital Corp. as well as Conservatives for Patients' Rights, which advocated for free market principles of choice, competition, accountability and personal responsibility in healthcare. Columbia had 340 hospitals and 135 surgery centers when Gov. Scott left the company in 1997.
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