Gov.-elect Hutchinson names new state Surgeon General

by The City Wire staff ([email protected]) 123 views 

Gov.-elect Asa Hutchinson named Dr. Greg Bledsoe as the state’s new Surgeon General. He replaces Dr. Joe Thompson, who was told in late November that he would not remain in the position.

Bledsoe will join the faculty of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) as an Associate Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine in the College of Medicine on January 26, 2015, according to a press release from Hutchinson.

Bledsoe is board certified in Emergency Medicine and is chairman, Department of Emergency Medicine of Marshall Medical Center South in Alabama.

He completed medical school and residency at UAMS in 2002. He then spent five years on faculty in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, completing a two-year fellowship in International Emergency Medicine and a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Bledsoe’s international medical experience includes time in Honduras, Tanzania, Sudan, China, Qatar, Antarctica, and the Arctic, including the North Pole. He was also the personal physician to former President Bill Clinton during Clinton’s tour of Africa in 2002 and has served as an instructor and medical consultant for the United States Secret Service.

He is the son of Dr. James Bledsoe and Arkansas State Senator Cecile Bledsoe.

“Over the course of his career, Dr. Greg Bledsoe has experienced tremendous success, both nationally and internationally — just some of the many reasons I am pleased to announce him as Arkansas’s new Surgeon General. I have had the pleasure of knowing Greg for some time, and there is no doubt that he will serve our state and people well in this new role,” Hutchinson said.

Also on Tuesday (Dec. 30), John Andrews was informed that he would not be retained as director of the Arkansas Department of Rural Services.

Andrews confirmed the news to Talk Business & Politics.

The Department of Rural Services was established in 1991 under the name Office of Rural Advocacy to “serve as a single point of contact for all organizations and individuals with a desire to enhance the quality of life for our rural citizens,” according to the agency’s web site. The agency works with grant funding, research, and information and educational programming through regional forums and the annual Arkansas Rural Development Conference.

Andrews is a native of Walnut Ridge and served on the Arkansas Farm Bureau board of directors for 10 years and was the Secretary-Treasurer for 6 years.