Gov.-elect Wes Moore names key cabinet appointments

Published 1/12/2023 11:05 a.m. EST, Updated 1/17/2023 10:10 a.m. EST

Governor-elect Wes Moore speaks at the Daily Record Panel in Annapolis, MD on January 11, 2023

Maryland Gov.-elect Wes Moore named additional members of his cabinet on Thursday, picking leaders who will oversee areas of government including public health, human services and juvenile services.

Moore, a Democrat, who will be sworn into office on Wednesday, announced the following nominations:

  • Dr. Laura Herrera Scott as health secretary. Scott has worked in the private sector and previously was a deputy secretary of public health for the state from 2011 to 2015. She also served in the medical corps of the U.S. Army Reserves, reaching the rank of major. Her medical degree is from the State University of New York Health Science Center in Brooklyn.
  • Portia Wu as secretary of labor. Wu most recently was with Microsoft, where she was managing director of U.S. public policy. She previously worked in the federal government, including as an assistant secretary for employment and training at the U.S. Department of Labor.
  • Rafael López as secretary of human services. The Department of Human Services oversees public benefit programs, child support services and the state’s foster care system. He comes to the state from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where he most recently was a senior advisor for children and families.
  • Atif Chaudhry as secretary of general services. The Department of General Services oversees all state properties and is deeply involved in government contracting. He previously was deputy secretary of operations at the state Department of Health.
  • Anthony Woods as secretary of veterans affairs. Woods has been executive director of the Quad Fellowship, which the Moore team described as a fellowship program “designed to build ties among the next generation of scientists and technologists.” A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, he served two tours in Iraq and earned a Bronze Star, according to the Moore team.
  • Vincent Schiraldi as secretary of juvenile services. Schiraldi is the former commissioner of New York City’s Department of Correction and the director of juvenile corrections in Washington, D.C.

Moore’s pace of nominating cabinet secretaries has been slower than recent governors, including outgoing Gov. Larry Hogan and former Gov. Martin O’Malley, who had largely filled out their teams before their inaugurations.

Previously, Moore had named just three members of his cabinet: Budget Secretary Helene Grady, Appointments Secretary Tisha Edwards and Secretary of State Susan Lee, a state senator.

He still has several key roles left to fill, including secretaries of transportation, commerce, environment and natural resources.

Moore and Lt. Gov.-elect Aruna Miller will be sworn into office at noon on Wednesday at the State House in Annapolis. Cabinet secretaries will serve on an acting basis until they receive confirmation votes in the state Senate.

Baltimore Banner reporter Brenda Wintrode contributed to this article.

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