Sue Birch named Executive Director of the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing
DENVER — Friday, Dec. 31, 2010 — Gov.-elect John Hickenlooper announced today Sue Birch will be Executive Director of the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing.
Birch is now the Chief Executive Officer of the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association in Steamboat Springs. She also helped start Club 20’s Health Care task force, which focused on Western Slope health care challenges. The task force evolved into Healthy 58, uniting 58 non-metro counties from the state on improving health care.
“Sue Birch has made herself an expert on how to provide medical care in rural areas with limited budgets,” Hickenlooper said. “Her regional and collaborative approach will serve well to address health care issues on a statewide basis.
Birch has worked the past 17 years for the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association, expanding programs, developing strategic partnerships and strengthening the association’s operations. The agency is moving into a nurse-led model of integrated community health services including primary care, home and hospice care, public health and aging services.
“I am honored to be part of the Hickenlooper-Garcia team,” Birch said. “At this pivotal time in health care reform, Colorado is poised to leverage the successes of our healthy state and improve on health disparities and access for all Coloradans. Our opportunities to better health begins where we live, learn, work and play.”
Before moving to Northwest Colorado, Birch served at Georgetown University Hospital and in a variety of progressive nursing roles with Kaiser Permanente in Colorado. She is a trustee of the Caring for Colorado Foundation, and the Colorado Health Institute and a past president of the Home Care Association of Colorado.
Birch recently completed an appointment to the National Advisory Committee on Rural Health and Human Services, had a Bonfils-Stanton Foundation Livingston Fellowship and the Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellowship. She earned a nursing degree and a master’s degree in business administration, both from the University of Colorado.
Maj. Gen. Michael Edwards named Executive Director of Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DENVER — Friday, Dec. 31, 2010 — Gov.-elect John Hickenlooper announced today Maj. Gen. Michael Edwards will be Executive Director of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.
Edwards currently serves in this role in Gov. Bill Ritter’s cabinet. He is also the Adjutant General for Colorado and is responsible for the command administration of more than 5,500 Colorado Army and Air National Guard members.
“Gen. Edwards will continue to be a strong voice for veterans in Colorado who have proudly served our country,” Hickenlooper said. “He is an experienced leader and Colorado is fortunate to have him in command of the Colorado Army and Air National Guard.”
Edwards oversees the Colorado National Guard’s primary missions of national defense and state emergency response. In addition, he is responsible for supporting the missions of the Civil Air Patrol’s Colorado Wing, consisting of more than 2,500 volunteers.
“It is truly an honor and a privilege to be offered the opportunity of continued service to our state’s Veterans and our Colorado National Guard as a member of Gov.-elect Hickenlooper’s team,” Edwards said.
Edwards was commissioned a Second Lieutenant upon graduation in 1973 from the U.S. Air Force Academy. He attended undergraduate pilot training at Reese Air Force Base, Texas, and earned his pilot wings in 1974. He served as an F-4 Pilot and AT-38 Fighter Lead-in Instructor Pilot at Osan Air Base, Korea, and Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., respectively.
Edwards joined the Colorado Air National Guard in 1980. He has served in numerous assignments in flying and operations, as well as command positions at squadron, group and wing levels. He also served as Combat Air Operations Center Director, Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, from May to June 2003. Edwards is a command pilot with more than 4,600 military flight hours, including 135 combat hours. He has flown the A-7, AT-38, C-21, F-4, F-16, T-37 and T-38 aircraft.
Edwards was appointed by Gov. Ritter in 2007 to lead the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.
TJ Deora named Director of Governor’s Energy Office
DENVER — Friday, Dec. 31, 2010 — Gov.-elect John Hickenlooper announced today TJ Deora will be Director of the Governor’s Energy Office.
Deora now leads state and regional policy advocacy efforts for Houston-based Horizon Wind Energy’s government affairs team, focusing on promoting investment-friendly environments for renewable energy.
“Colorado is clearly a global leader when it comes to wind, solar and other sources of renewable energy,” Hickenlooper said. “We are excited to have TJ Deora join our team as we continue to find ways for the energy industry to grow, create jobs and help boost our state’s economy.”
Deora, who lives in Denver, recently led Horizon’s early-stage project development efforts in the Rockies and worked in Colorado’s Kit Carson, Cheyenne and Baca counties. He helped found and served as co-chair of the Colorado Renewables and Conservation Collaborative, a voluntary working group of conservation groups and wind developers writing best practices for siting of wind farms. Deora also served on the boards of the Interwest Energy Alliance, the Colorado Independent Energy Association and Renewable Energy New England.
“Over the past several years Colorado has developed a robust cleantech industry, ranging from R&D to manufacturing and deployment of energy production facilities,” Deora said. “I am honored to have the opportunity to serve our state in expanding its leadership role and leveraging our strong human and natural resources to bring more jobs and investment here to the Rockies.”
Before joining Horizon, Deora was a consultant with McKinsey & Company’s energy practice, based in Washington, D.C., serving utility and industrial clients. He earlier worked for Calpine Corp.’s energy trading group in Houston, analyzing the performance of its fleet of natural gas-fired power plants and guiding trading strategy.
Deora started his career as a engineer for The Dow Chemical Co., working there for seven years in engineering, operations, research and development, and business development roles. He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Texas and a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard Business School.
Deora served two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Jamaica before joining Dow.