For Immediate Release: July 20, 2022
Ben Truman │ Vermont Department of Health
802-316-2117 / 802-863-7281
Julie Arel Named Deputy Commissioner of Health
BURLINGTON, VT – Health Commissioner Mark Levine, MD today announced the appointment of Julie Arel as deputy commissioner for the Vermont Department of Health. Ms. Arel served for the past eight years as director of the department’s Division of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. She begins her new job on August 1, serving alongside fellow Deputy Commissioner Kelly Dougherty.
“We are fortunate to have someone with Julie’s expertise and commitment to public health join our leadership team,” said Dr. Levine. “I value her counsel and have high regard for the critical and wonderful work she and her staff do for Vermonters every day. I also want to express my thanks and gratitude to our Finance chief Paul Daley, who has been serving as interim deputy commissioner, keeping the trains running on time.”
As division director, Arel has been responsible for overseeing programs and initiatives ranging from tobacco control and chronic disease prevention to worksite wellness. In that role, Arel led the establishment of the Health Department’s signature chronic disease prevention initiative, 3-4-50. The program refers to how 3 behaviors – lack of physical activity, poor diet, and tobacco use – lead to 4 chronic diseases – cancer, heart disease and stroke, type 2 diabetes and lung disease – that are the cause of more than 50% of all deaths in Vermont. Arel has also been serving as section chief for the operational aspects of the Health Department’s COVID-19 emergency response.
Before joining the Health Department, Arel served as the executive director for Open Door Clinic in Middlebury, Parent to Parent of Vermont and Vermont Family Network, and the New England Rural Health Roundtable. A resident of Essex Junction, she is a graduate of Smith College and earned Masters’ degrees in Social Work and in Public Health from Boston University.
“I’m honored to be able to serve the people of Vermont in this role,” said Arel. “Public health has the power to impact climate change, build healthy communities, change the trajectory of a pandemic, and ultimately save lives. I’m excited to be a part of the department during this pivotal time in our work.”
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