Dennis Cookro, M.D., M.P.H., assumed the position of Interim Director of the Bay County Health Department.
Dr. Cookro has significant work experience in Public Health at the federal, state and local levels. He has served as Deputy District Administrator for Health, District 15, Florida Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services and Medical Executive Director, Putnam County Health Department.
Dr. Cookro has also served as Director of the Duval County Health Department. He currently serves as a medical advisor to the Florida Department of Health providing consultation and teaching across the state of Florida in public health performance management and improvement with a focus on public health administration. Additionally, Dr. Cookro has over 20 years experience in individual clinical patient care.
Dr. Cookro replaced Jennifer Bencie, M.D., M.S.A., who served as Interim Director of the Bay County Health Department from May 11-22, 2009, after the resignation of Dr. Jason Newsom. Dr. Bencie returned to her duties as the Director of the Division of Emergency Medical Operations, Florida Department of Health. During her two weeks as Interim Director, Dr. Bencie met with staff, community partners and county leadership to ensure the continued success of the Bay County Health Department.
Dr. Cookro will continue as the Interim Director until a permanent director is hired. The Florida Department of Health, in close cooperation with the Bay County Commissioners, is conducting a national search to permanently fill the position of director of the Bay County Health Department.