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Sonoma County supervisors appoint Tina Rivera as health services director

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors appointed Tina Rivera as the county’s new health services director Tuesday morning, capping a search process that began almost a year ago.

Rivera, 57, has been leading the department as interim director since May 2021, helping oversee the county’s pandemic response, including coronavirus testing to vaccine rollout.

Rivera, who joined the meeting via Zoom, thanked the board and her fellow department heads who attended the meeting in person in a show of support.

“The task that lies ahead is never more important or greater than the power that’s behind you,” Rivera said. “It’s really all about the teams, it’s about the relationships, it’s about the collaboration.”

With the board’s appointment, Rivera officially takes over a department with about 582 staff members and a budget of approximately $330 million. The board committed to a three-year agreement with Rivera, extending to February 2025.

Rivera’s salary will be $240,312, according to a staff report.

Before voting, all five county supervisors took turns to thank Rivera and praise her work leading the department thus far.

“You have managed to shepherd this department through one of the toughest times in this department’s history,” Supervisor Lynda Hopkins told Rivera, later adding that she is “looking forward to seeing you blossom and lead.”

About 10 of Rivera’s fellow department heads marked her appointment by attending the board’s meeting in-person, a first in several months. They joined supervisors near the dais to applaud Rivera following the vote.

You can reach Staff Writer Emma Murphy at 707-521-5228 or emma.murphy@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @MurphReports.

Emma Murphy

County government, politics reporter

The decisions of Sonoma County’s elected leaders and those running county government departments impact people’s lives in real, direct ways. Your local leaders are responsible for managing the county’s finances, advocating for support at the state and federal levels, adopting policies on public health, housing and business — to name a few — and leading emergency response and recovery.
As The Press Democrat’s county government and politics reporter, my job is to spotlight their work and track the outcomes.

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