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OSDH names new State Epidemiologist, Chief Science Officer, Chief Medical Officer

Monday, April 26, 2021

New hires to three agency positions are effective immediately

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) announced three new hires to key agency positions today.

Jolianne Stone, MPH is moving into a new role as State Epidemiologist. Stone takes over the position as former State Epidemiologist, Dr. Jared Taylor, is also moving into a new role at OSDH. Stone most recently served as Deputy State Epidemiologist for Oklahoma, and previously worked as an Epidemiologist at OSDH. Her past experience includes Infection Prevention Manager at Integris, and she brings her unique perspective addressing the COVID-19 pandemic in a hospital setting to this new position.

Dr. Jared Taylor has been named Chief Science Officer at OSDH. In this new role, Dr. Taylor will work to bring an academic lens to operations at OSDH and public health initiatives in the state, including work with the new Oklahoma Pandemic Center for Innovation and Excellence. Dr. Taylor formerly served as State Epidemiologist and is also an Associate Professor of Veterinary Pathobiology at the Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences.

Dr. Gitanjali Pai has been appointed Chief Medical Officer at OSDH. Dr. Pai is an infectious disease physician whose prior experience with OSDH includes a position on the COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Advisory Council. In her new role as CMO, she will provide medical oversight of OSDH operations and public health initiatives. Dr. Pai currently practices at Memorial Hospital in Stilwell, Oklahoma and also serves as an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Rural Health - Internal Medicine/Infectious Disease at Oklahoma State University.

“We congratulate these three individuals on their new roles, and we’re grateful for the service they have provided and will continue to provide to our state,” said Dr. Lance Frye, Commissioner of Health. “These three positions are particularly crucial right now as we strive to learn from the COVID-19 pandemic and improve our response to future pandemics. I’m confident they’re the right people for the job, and I look forward to working with them to protect the health and wellness of Oklahomans.”


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