June 10, 2005: Headlines: COS - Ghana: State Government: Benton Courier: Ghana RPCV John Selig of Benton will take over as director of Arkansas Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Ghana: Peace Corps Ghana : The Peace Corps in Ghana: June 10, 2005: Headlines: COS - Ghana: State Government: Benton Courier: Ghana RPCV John Selig of Benton will take over as director of Arkansas Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-245-37.balt.east.verizon.net - 151.196.245.37) on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 3:33 pm: Edit Post

Ghana RPCV John Selig of Benton will take over as director of Arkansas Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency

Ghana RPCV John Selig of Benton will take over as director of Arkansas Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency

Ghana RPCV John Selig of Benton will take over as director of Arkansas Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency

Benton man chosen to head DHS

Courier Staff

Caption: John Selig, second from right, is introduced by Governor Mike Huckabee, far right, as the director of the Department of Human Services when current Director Kurt Knickrehm, center, resigns June 30 to take a job in the private sector. (Photo special to the Courier)

John Selig of Benton will take over as director of the Department of Human Services, the state's largest agency, Gov. Mike Huckabee announced Thursday in a news conference at the Capitol.

Selig will replace Kurt Knickrehm, who is leaving state government to join the private sector. Knickrehm has headed the department since January 1999.

Selig will begin his new duties July 1. After DHS merges with the state Department of Health in August, Selig will head the combined departments.

"I appreciate the opportunity the governor is giving me to continue serving the people of Arkansas," Selig said.

Selig, 44, is a DeQueen native. He currently is deputy director of DHS in charge of the divisions of Behavioral Health Services, Medical Services, Developmental Disabilities, County Operations and Aging and Adult Services.

He also has been overseeing merger preparations with the Health Department.

"We hate to lose Kurt," the governor said. "He will be remembered as one of the finest directors in the history of the department. John is incredibly qualified to step in and ensure the merger goes smoothly.

"We won't miss a beat with John in charge. This combined department will serve more than a million Arkansans, and I know John will see to it that the department is the most efficient health and human services agency in the country.

"We owe that to the taxpayers. He's a brilliant public servant and dedicated to the people of our state."

Selig received his bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 1982 and his master's degree in public administration from Princeton University in 1987. He served in the Peace Corps as a teacher in west Africa from1982-84 and then served on the Little Rock staff of U.S. Sen. David Pryor in1984-85.

Selig joined DHS in March 1988. He was at the Health Department from 1994 to 1996 before returning to DHS.

The incoming DHS director spent three years as director of the Division of Mental Health Services at DHS. In that role, he focused on increasing consumer and advocate involvement in the state's public mental health system. He began a state mental health public awareness campaign that received a national award for excellence from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill.

Selig has served on numerous boards, including the state Minority Health Commission and the state Health Services Permit Commission. At the Health Department, Selig managed home health and personal care programs.

Selig's wife, Jeannie Fetting, is a consultant on affordable housing. Their teenage daughter, Lacy, leaves this summer for a semester in Thailand. The couple are also the parents of 4-year-old twins, Jack and Mary Catherine.

Knickrehm was the chief executive officer of Tenet Physician Services' Central States Region from 1996 until joining DHS as deputy director in July 1998. He was in charge of the company's operational and financial management in a six-state region.

From 1994 to 1996, Knickrehm was president of Coastal Physician Services of the West Inc. at Dallas. He was responsible for the company's physician management contracting business in 22 states.

"I appreciate the dedication Kurt has shown in his service to state government," Huckabee said. "He quickly became recognized as one of the top human services directors in the country. John will soon be recognized in the same way."





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Story Source: Benton Courier

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Ghana; State Government

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