Office of the Press Secretary
PRESIDENT CLINTON NAMES KENNETH W. KIZER AS UNDER SECRETARY FOR HEALTH FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS The President today announced his intention to nominate Kenneth
W. Kizer of Maryland as Under Secretary for Health in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
"Dr. Kizer brings a wide range of clinical and administrative experience to the VA and tested leadership,which will be crucial to the department's success in the framework of national health-care reform," the President said.
Dr. Kizer currently chairs the Department of Community and International Health at the School of Medicine, University of California, Davis, having served for six years as the state's director of health services. His appointment would place him in charge of the VA medical system, the nation's largest.
Dr. Kizer earned his medical degree in 1976 at the University of California, Los Angeles, following graduation from Stanford University. He then entered the U. S. Navy as a medical officer serving at facilities in Virginia, Connecticut and Hawaii. In 1980, Dr. Kizer entered private practice in California and specialized in a variety of emergency and occupational medicine activities including voluntary faculty work at University of California (U.C.), Davis.
In 1984, he joined the California Department of Health Services as director of the state's preventive health programs. The following year, Kizer was appointed to head the entire system, the largest statelevel medical organization in the nation. His oversight of some 150 programs included Medi-Cal, which disburses more Medicaid funds than any other state, an effective oversight and enforcement program of nursing homes, and diverse health-related areas including AIDS, environmental health, and screening and preventive initiatives.
Since 1991, Kizer's position at U.C. Davis has placed him in charge of academic programs concerned with institutional response to public health matters. He also holds faculty appointments in community and international health and in emergency medicine and clinical toxicology. He chairs the board of the California Wellness Foundation and serves with several other non-profit health-related organizations.