Wednesday, May 7, 2008


DMHC Director Cindy Ehnes named the 2008 Public Administrator of the Year by the American Society of Public Administrators

Cited for innovation in state government and outstanding leadership

(Sacramento)— Cindy Ehnes, Director of the California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC), has been named Public Administrator of the Year by the American Society of Public Administration (ASPA), Sacramento Chapter, for her commendable service, unwavering commitment to improvement, and outstanding contributions to the community. Since 1982, ASPA Sacramento has recognized outstanding local public administrators, professors, and students through its awards program. The award was presented at the ASPA Annual Awards Banquet in Sacramento on May 8.

"Cindy Ehnes exemplifies the very best values of public service. She brings great courage every day to her job, with leadership that advances healthcare coverage in California" said Rich Callahan, Associate Dean and Director of the University of Southern California’s State Capital and Leadership Programs.

The ASPA award acknowledges Ehnes’ extraordinary leadership in health care issues. As Director of the DMHC, Ehnes oversees 330 employees and is charged with protecting the rights of patients, while preserving a stable and affordable managed health care system in California. Her innovative thinking has brought technological improvement to the DMHC, resulting in cost savings to health plans and ultimately to consumers. Specifically, she has worked with consumer advocates to promote diversity and language access to care and has sought solutions to protect consumers from unfair medical bills. She has also shown a strong commitment to the professional development of her DMHC team by providing access to training and championing staff advancement. In addition, she has worked to expand health coverage as part of the Governor’s Health Care Reform team and she has labored to advance the adoption of health information technology and telemedicine.

In 2007, she was named one of "20 People Who Make Healthcare Better" by HealthLeaders Magazine for being a policy leader who takes on complicated and controversial issues, while creating a culture of accountability in the managed care industry.

Past recipients of the Public Administrator of the Year Award include the former President of California State University, Sacramento, Donald R. Gerth; California State Librarian Kevin Starr; California Legislative Analyst Elizabeth Hill; Sacramento City Manager Bob Thomas, and SMUD General Manager Jan Schori. The ASPA is the nation's leading public service organization advancing the art, science, teaching, and practice of public and non-profit administration. For more information about ASPA visit Ehnes’ full biography can be found at