Executive Director, ND Dept of Human Services
Gov. Doug Burgum appointed Chris Jones Executive Director of the North Dakota Department of Human Services in February 2017. Chris officially joined the department and the governor’s cabinet on March 6, 2017.
He brings 19 years of experience in private sector health service operations, strategy, technology and consulting to his role as DHS Executive Director.
Chris was previously a division senior vice president of strategy and business development for Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI), an enterprise with more than $15 billion in annual revenue and over 100 hospitals across 18 states, including CHI St. Alexius Health in Bismarck. Prior to that role, he spent several years as a manager, director and analyst in CHI’s Strategy and Business Development function and worked as a consultant for Allina Health System and Vizient.
Chris earned his master of business administration degree from the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, and has undergraduate degrees in health care administration and Scandinavian studies from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn.
The Department of Human Services’ 2017-2019 budget totals $3.9 billion and includes 2,162 authorized full-time equivalents (full and part-time positions). The department oversees Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program (Healthy Steps), economic assistance programs including Child Care Assistance, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program; Child Support; Aging Services; Children and Family Services including child protection, family preservation services, foster care and adoption; Vocational Rehabilitation; Developmental Disabilities Services; the Life Skills and Transition Center, and Behavioral Health Services, which include the Behavioral Health Division, the North Dakota State Hospital, and the eight regional human service centers.
Sue Hamilton is a Motivational Speaker and author. She has been Motivating & inspiring since 1999 with her "tell-it-like-it-is" approach to life. Inspires others to be all they are intended to be.
Shares her past life challenges of substance abuse to a life filled with miracles. Encourages others with her caring, loving and honest approach. Excellent story teller, you'll love her honesty and sense of humor. Writes like she speaks, very conversational. Sue Hamilton has a B.A. degree in Marketing & Management. Sue has Over 26 years of experience in direct sales, top management, customer service, employee training and business development.
Deonne Varriano, LICSW, has been employed at Southeast Human Service Center since 1986 beginning with her work as a case manager. She transferred to a therapy position in 1994 after earning a Master in Social Work (MSW) degree from University of North Dakota.
Her therapy experience includes working with an IDDT (Integrated Duel Disorder) team and providing individual, couples and group therapy in the counseling unit. She has a special interest in Marsha Linehan’s DBT module and has co-facilitated DBT groups for over 20 years.
She is currently providing clinical supervision for those pursing LICSW licensure at Southeast Human Service Center. She has been training staff in Motivational Interviewing since 2007.
Michael Mitchell began his career with the Fargo Police Department in 1992 where he held several positions including; Police Training Officer, Police Training Sergeant, Internal Affairs Commander and the Commander of the Fargo Police Training Division.
After 25 years of service, Michael retired from the police department and took a position with City of Fargo as the Training and Development Coordinator. In this capacity, Michael uses his knowledge of adult learning principles, curriculum development and interactive facilitation in emotional intelligence to expand the knowledge of others.
Michael has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Sociology and a Master’s Degree in Strategic Leadership. Michael is also a certified Emotional Intelligence Practitioner through the Global Six Seconds Organization.
David Zimmerman is the Consumer Assistance Division Director at the North Dakota Insurance Department; and serves as North Dakota’s State SHIP Director.
He was appointed by Governor Dalrymple to serve on the North Dakota Interagency Coordinating Council and is a member of the Senior Medicare Patrol Advisory Committee.
He has been with the Insurance Department since 2010 and prior to that served in various leadership capacities within the healthcare field. David holds a BS Degree in Management from Park University and a MS in Administration from Central Michigan University.
Special Agent Rob Fontenot began his career in law enforcement in December 2002 with the Morton County Sheriff’s Department as a Narcotics Investigator with the Metro Area Narcotics Task Force. In 2008 SA Fontenot went to work for the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation as a Narcotic/Criminal investigator.
During his law enforcement career SA Rob Fontenot has served as an Assistant Task Force Coordinator and Coordinator at the Metro Area Narcotics Task Force in Bismarck ND. SA Rob Fontenot is currently assigned to the South West Narcotics Task Force in Dickinson ND as the Task Force Coordinator.
SA Rob Fontenot is a certified law enforcement instructor and Field Training Officer. SA Rob Fontenot has been involved in over 1000 drug investigations involving multi-state as well as international Drug Trafficking Organizations.
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