USC Price School of Public Policy

Mitchell Katz

Mitchell Katz

Los Angeles County Department of Health Services

Dr. Mitchell H. Katz, who has an extensive background in the field of public healthcare and executive-level healthcare management, will become Los Angeles County’s director of health services on Jan. 3, 2011.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors today appointed Katz to head the department at an annual salary of $355,000. He replaces Bruce Chernof, who resigned in May 2008. John Schunhoff, chief deputy of the Department of Health Services, has been interim director since Chernof’s departure.

“While Dr. Katz has experience in running a major urban public health care system, he also has the vision and passion to steer the L.A. County Department of Health Services to meet the challenges and opportunities posed by national health reform,” said Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky.

Katz has more than 19 years of experience with the City and County of San Francisco Department of Public Health, and has been serving as the director of public health/health officer since 1997. In this capacity, he is responsible for an operating budget of $1.5 billion and a large healthcare system that includes two hospitals, nine primary care health centers, the County’s managed care mental health system, and 8,600 employees.

“LA County is fortunate to have such an accomplished leader join our team,” said William T Fujioka, County chief executive officer. “His proven experience in the public healthcare field brings vision and knowledge to our health system.”

Katz’s accomplishments include designing and implementing “Healthy San Francisco,” a comprehensive health care coverage program serving more than 53,000 uninsured San Franciscans through a public-private partnership. The program won the National Association of Public Hospital Chair’s Award (highest award given, 2010) and American Hospital Association NOVA Award (2010).

Katz , 50, who grew up in Brooklyn, graduated from Yale and Harvard Medical School. He did his residency at the University of California, San Francisco.