Health and Services Department

This story was updated at 8:10 p.m. with comments from Board of Health president Rebecca Cawrse.

ASHLAND -- The Ashland County Board of Health has parted ways with its commissioner.

Heather Reffett, who was hired in March, is no longer employed at the Ashland County Health Department, according to a Tuesday press release.

"We thank her for her service and wish her well in the future," the release stated. 


Heather Reffett. 

According to Board of Health president Rebecca Cawrse, the decision was made by an unanimous vote following an executive session at a special meeting Monday evening.

"The decision was made last night and became effective immediately," Cawrse said. She declined to comment on the reason.  

Reffett replaced Sarah Humphrey, who left the ACHD to become health commissioner for Richland Public Health in Mansfield. 

Reffett had most recently been employed as the director of development at Care Alliance Health Center. She also noted work experience at the Department of Public Health at the District of Columbia Government.

“Heather comes to us as an accomplished public servant with a love of learning, a joyful nature and honed leadership skills. She enjoys problem-solving, collaborating and developing the talents of others,” a Facebook post from the ACHD said. 

Reffett graduated from Kent State University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science in 1998. In 2003, she became a Certified Public Manager-Program for Excellence in Municipal Management from George Washington University. In 2006 she graduated from George Mason University with a Master of Public Education with a concentration in Local and State Government.

Going forward, Dr. David Tomchak will act as interim health commissioner/medical director and Mrs. Jenny Helbert as the financial administrator. Both roles are typically done by the health commissioner. 

"The Ashland County Health Department will continue to offer services uninterrupted to the community," the release stated. 

The Board of Health intends to hire a new commissioner "as soon as possible," Cawrse said. 

On Tuesday, the ACHD reported 181 active cases of COVID-19, bringing the cumulative count to 1009. Twenty-three deaths were due to coronavirus specifically and 12 more were pending death certificates. Nine individuals are currently hospitalized with COVID-19. 

Additionally, 430 Ashland residents are being monitored and quarantined for prevention and spread of the virus.

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