New Cole County health director hired

The Cole County Commission has named Kristi Campbell as the director of the Cole County Health Department, effective Oct. 15.

Campbell replaces Marie Peoples, who served in the position for nearly three years. Peoples accepted a position with the Public Health Services District in Flagstaff, Ariz., as chief health officer of Coconino County.

Campbell previously worked for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services for more than 10 years, most recently as section administrator for disease prevention. She also worked as an environmental specialist for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources for nearly four years.

Presiding County Commissioner Marc Ellinger said his office received numerous applications for the position from across the country.

“After reviewing, interviewing and working with the prior director, we realized the best candidate was Kristi Campbell,” Ellinger said. “She has the background knowledge in core public health and financial management that we need in these challenging times.”

Campbell holds a bachelor’s degree in geological sciences from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

She said the diverse areas of health that she has worked in qualify her for the position.

The director of the Cole County Health Department is responsible for planning and directing Cole County public health programs, as well as coordinating all activities of the department to ensure conformance with statewide public health programs. The director also coordinates contracts with community groups, local officials and the general public regarding public health activities.

Campbell said her first task will be to get to know the staff.

“I want to see what projects are in development and see what the goals should be for the next few years,” Campbell said.

Campbell was born and raised in Jefferson City, and she, her husband, Rick, her 12-year-old stepson, Cole, and 4-year-old daughter, Landry, attend Faith Lutheran Church.

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