The assistant director of health for Springfield-Greene County has been promoted to director.
Clay Goddard will assume the role Nov. 12. He’ll take over for Kevin Gipson, who announced last week he’ll retire after 13 years as director.
"It is my pleasure to appoint Clay Goddard as the new director of the Springfield-Greene County Health Department. Within public health circles. Clay's reputation precedes him,” City Manager Greg Burris said in a statement. “He works well with, and is respected by, other community leaders both regionally and beyond. We're fortunate to have someone of Clay's caliber ready to step into this role – he will hit the ground running. I look forward to working with him in this new role."
Goddard has been with the Springfield-Greene County Health Department since 1996, starting as an intern and continuing his public health service in a variety of roles. That includes as current president of the Missouri Center for Public Health Excellence. Goddard is a member of the American Public Health Association and National Association of City and County Health Officials. He serves on the board for Community Partnership of the Ozarks and co-chairs the Community Investment process for the United Way of the Ozarks. Goddard is also a veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard. He also serves as an adjunct faculty member with Drury University.
Current director Gipson said, “In 1996, a young graduate student named Clay Goddard walked into my office requesting an internship. I made the decision to hire him and have worked side-by-side with him ever since. He has developed into one of the most respected public health leaders in the state of Missouri. He not only is a great leader, but an even better human being. I could not be prouder to leave this department in his hands.”
According to a news release, Goddard holds a master’s degree in public administration and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Missouri State University. He is a graduate of the Missouri Public Health Leadership Institute and Leadership Springfield. Goddard served as director of the city’s Information Systems Department before returning to public health.
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