CHEHALIS – A new director has been named of the Lewis County agency that has been in the spotlight for the past few years of the COVID pandemic. Lewis County Manager Erik Martin announcing Tuesday the appointment of Meja Handlen as Interim Public Health Director. Handlen has been Deputy director of the department under former Director J.P. Anderson. Handlen says she’s excited or the new opportunity in assuring the availability of a variety of public health programs for local citizens. She says, “It’s about adapting to what the community needs, seeing things that might not be on the horizon today, but in view for tomorrow. Looking forward and making sure that our staff and our programs really reflect the values of the community members it’s trying to serve.” Anderson is the new CEO of Choice Regional Health Networks, based in Olympia. Handlen as Interim Director, will be considered by the Lewis County commissioners, in their role as the county Board of Health, who will select a permanent Director of Public Health. The Health Board recently selected Centralia Pediatrician, Dr. Joe Wiley as the county’s new Health Officer. Photo courtesy: The Chronicle

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