Newsroom

Press Release

State of Florida
Department of Children and Families
Rick Scott
Governor

David E. Wilkins
Secretary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 20, 2011
MEDIA CONTACT: Erin Gillespie,
Press Secretary,
(850) 717-4450
DCF Communications

DCF ANNOUNCES NEW ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAM

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. – Department of Children and Families Secretary David Wilkins announced today the addition of a key member to the management team who will help guide the Department toward the mission of a more efficient and effective agency that places the protection of the state’s most vulnerable children and adults as the priority. Rob Siedlecki will join the Department of Children and Families on January 5 as the Assistant Secretary for Substance Abuse and Mental Health.

"Rob brings an incredible depth of experience and passion in social services management," said Secretary David Wilkins. "He has proven ability to manage change in a large organization, listen and work with partners in the Legislature and the private sector while never losing focus of the ultimate goal, which is helping every Floridian have the opportunity for a better life."

Rob, a native Floridian, was most recently the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services and is replacing David Sofferin, who is resigning on Jan. 5 for a new position in Georgia.

As Secretary of the Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, Rob managed a social services agency with more than 5,000 employees and a $1.7 billion budget and oversaw an agency with many of the same missions as DCF, including operating hospitals for people with mental illnesses and contracting with providers for substance abuse treatment.

Rob's experience in Florida includes serving as the chief of staff for the Florida Department of Health for two years and overseeing health departments and contracted providers throughout the state. Rob's social services experience includes serving as a special assistant for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration of Children and Families. The ACF has an annual budget of $46 billion and oversees more than 60 programs, including services aimed at helping people with substance abuse and mental health issues return to independence and self-sufficiency.

Rob graduated from Pine Crest High School in Fort Lauderdale, earned his B.A. from Harvard College and his law degree from Cornell Law School.

After two years in his current position, David will return to his home state as the Executive Director of Behavioral Health Services of South Georgia, a non-profit organization providing comprehensive services for a ten-county region.

"The Department is fortunate to have Rob join us as we continue providing critical care to our friends and neighbors who deserve the opportunities so many of us take for granted," Wilkins said. "I want to thank David for his superb leadership at the Department overseeing the consolidation of our contracting and streamlining of operations without sacrificing quality of care."

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Program currently manages a $942 million system of prevention, treatment and recovery support services through 275 community-based providers with 359 contracts. Rob will continue the Department's initiative to reduce costly administration oversight and increase efficiency by implementing Managing Entities to oversee contracts in each region of the state.

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