Health commissioner to retire after 30 years

The leader of Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County announced Thursday afternoon that he will be retiring after 30 years.

Health Commissioner Jeff Cooper’s name became widely known in the county with the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, when he led regular media briefings that also were streamed live on the health department’s social media pages.

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“We are very grateful to have had the leadership of Commissioner Cooper during the biggest public health crisis in our lifetimes,” Michael Sims, president of the Montgomery County Board of Health, said in a statement. “His dedication and exemplary service during the COVID-19 pandemic is something that all Montgomery County residents have benefitted from.”

Cooper, who became health commissioner in 2015, said he will be retiring by the end of the year.

Along with leading the department during the pandemic, he was at the helm as the department responded to the opioid crisis.

Prior to becoming health commissioner Cooper worked for seven years as assistant to the health commissioner, five years as coordinator of the emergency preparedness program and worked for the Regional Air Pollution Control Agency. He graduated from Beavercreek High School and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Wright State University.

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The process to hire the next commissioner will begin immediately, and will be led by the health board and Public Health’s human resources department.

“I am proud to have been associated with such a dedicated staff and will greatly miss seeing the good work they do every day,” Cooper said. “Montgomery County residents should feel confident in the ability of our staff to continue to make Montgomery County a healthy, safe and thriving community.”

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