Governor Appoints Belhaven Alum To Lead MDHS

John DavisFebruary 1, 2016 (Jackson, Miss.) - Gov. Phil Bryant appointed Belhaven alum John Davis ’12 executive director of the Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) on Monday, January 4, 2016.

Davis earned a master of science in leadership through Belhaven’s graduate program and later worked for the University as an adjunct professor, sharing his management expertise in the classroom.

He is a native Mississippian with 24 years of experience in human services, including work on the local, regional and state levels. He has been the deputy administrator for the last four years. Before that, Davis was the division director of economic assistance, state operations director as well as the director of the Lincoln County Department of Human Services.

“John understands the critical functions MDHS performs, and I appreciate him accepting this appointment,” said Gov. Bryant. “His experience and qualifications will serve the people of Mississippi well in his new role.”

“It is such an honor to serve the citizens of Mississippi in this role at the Mississippi Department of Human Services,” said Davis. “I also understand the tremendous responsibility, and I will be fully committed to this assignment. My life has been dedicated to serving others, and I believe this is a great opportunity to continue that work.”

Gov. Bryant believes in Davis’s leadership and is showing his support by seeking additional funding of $35 million for the agency.  Davis will be working in close conjunction with Supreme Court Justice David Chandler to improve the foster care system in Mississippi.

Davis believes that change starts with the family. “We are on a mission field, helping families and children here in the state of Mississippi. We want to strengthen families so they can sustain themselves and become more self-sufficient. My plan is to really look at all of the different divisions within MDHS and see how our agency as a whole, can better serve the people of this state.”

Davis is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He is a resident of Brookhaven where he and his family attend Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church.


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