Minden residents concerned about flooding EPA reports no additional contamination

Dr. Ayne Amjad, standing at right, updates residents of Minden and nearby areas on the situation regarding PCB contamination in and around that community Feb. 9, 2020, in Oak Hill. Among the topics discussed were current Environmental Protection Agency testing at numerous sites, what they've found at those sites and which sites residents want them to test where the EPA still hasn't. Amjad said the EPA told her they would hold a meeting updating residents sometime in the coming spring, but a date hadn't been set. She said she would host more of these types of progress report meetings about once a month as new information becomes available.(Brad Davis/The Register-Herald)

Dr. Ayne Amjad of Beckley was appointed by Gov. Jim Justice as state health officer and commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) Bureau for Public Health.

In making the appointment along with DHHR Cabinet Secretary Bill J. Crouch, Justice called Amjad “a superstar.”

The appointment is effective immediately.

Since 2010, Dr. Amjad, of Beckley, has been a private practice physician specializing in internal medicine and preventive health care serving residents in Beckley, Oak Hill and Princeton. She also is the assistant program director of Encompass Health in Princeton and the medical director of PCH Home Care in Beckley.

“Dr. Amjad is an incredible West Virginian and I am so happy that she is joining our team to lead our Bureau for Public Health and serve as state health officer,” Gov. Justice said. “I am confident she will do a tremendous job for the people of West Virginia.”

Dr. Amjad has a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from Virginia Tech, a master’s degree in public health from West Virginia University, an M.D. from Marshall University, and studied internal medicine at Allegheny General Hospital.

“We welcome Dr. Amjad and her broad experience as a practicing physician on the local level to lead our Bureau for Public Health during this pandemic,” said Secretary Crouch.

Previously she was the project coordinator of Beryllium Research Team, of the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, and a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention fellow. She is the founder of Bee-Better, a nonprofit organization against opioid addiction, and a member of the Human Rights Commission in Beckley.

“As a native West Virginian, I have served my region for many years from treating addiction to chronic health disease,” said Dr. Amjad. “Especially during this pandemic, I am truly excited to take on this new role which will have a greater impact and provide the opportunity to serve all the residents of the state.”

Dr. Amjad replaces Dr. Cathy Slemp, who resigned under pressure from Justice on June 24.

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