Vasterling named acting Mo. health director

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Gov. Jay Nixon has named a longtime aide as the acting director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.

Nixon said Tuesday that deputy director Gail Vasterling will take over for Margaret Donnelly, who left the post last Friday for a job teaching health law at Saint Louis University.

Vasterling has served as the agency’s deputy director since January 2012. She previously spent two years as a deputy counsel in the governor’s office, and one year as general counsel for the Department of Corrections during Nixon’s administration.

Vasterling also was in the attorney general’s office from 1994 to 2008, when Nixon was attorney general.

Donnelly had served as the health director since Nixon became governor in 2009.

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