NEW JERSEY — The head of New Jersey’s largest state agency is leaving to take a roll with the Biden-Harris COVID-19 Response Team, the transition team announced Tuesday.
Carole Johnson, who serves as Gov. Phil Murphy’s commissioner of the department of human services, will serve as testing coordinator for the Biden administration’s COVID-19 efforts.
The state’s human services department serves one out of five New Jerseyans, including those that are elderly, those with low incomes, those with developmental or late-onset disabilities, parents needing child care services, those in need of addiction and mental health services, and many more.
The governor praised her work at DHS in a tweet.
From day one, @NJDHS Commissioner Carole Johnson has been one of our most valuable team members and a leading voice for our most vulnerable residents. While I’m sad to see Carole depart, I know she’ll be a tremendous asset to President-elect @JoeBiden in this critical role. https://t.co/3DyMDPFEol— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) December 29, 2020
Johnson previously worked in the Obama White House as the Domestic Policy Council public health lead during the administration’s Ebola and Zika responses, and also worked on Capitol Hill.
In her new role, Johnson will “coordinate the federal effort to expand COVID-19 testing and the use of testing for an effective public health response.”
She will have an emphasis on schools, nursing homes, other at-risk populations, and communities hardest hit by the pandemic. She will also chair the National Pandemic Testing Board, “which will work to ensure equitable test allocation, identify bottlenecks, and overcome barriers to access,” according to the Biden-Harris team.
Johnson is a New Jersey native.