Press Room

State and Territorial Health Leaders Commend Selection of John Wiesman as Co-Chair of Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS

John WiesmanARLINGTON, VA (Dec. 12, 2018)—The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) commends HHS Secretary Azar for appointing John Wiesman, immediate past president of ASTHO and Washington State Secretary of Health, to serve as co-chair of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA).

“Both as a clinician caring for patients with HIV and as a policymaker working to eliminate the disease, I have witnessed firsthand John’s commitment, passion, and expertise when it comes to HIV. He is supremely qualified to co-chair the reconstituted Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS and will lead bold public health actions to stop HIV,” says Nicole Alexander-Scott, ASTHO President and director of the Rhode Island Department of Health. “State and territorial health leaders throughout the country are committed to collaborating with the council to implement its recommendations. It is through these efforts at the federal, state, and local levels that we can bring an end to this disease that affects so many communities throughout the country.”

Wiesman was the president of ASTHO from 2017-2018 and has served as secretary of health for the Washington State Department of Health since April 2013. Wiesman began his public health career in 1986 as an HIV/AIDS test counselor in Connecticut where he was a member of the first group of people in the state trained to conduct HIV counseling and testing services. Today, he is working in Washington state to end AIDS, create the healthiest next generation, and expand foundational public health services across the state.

Wiesman is a native of Wisconsin and has worked in four local public health departments in Washington state and Connecticut. He earned his doctor of public health (DrPH) in public health executive leadership in 2012 from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He received his master of public health (MPH) in chronic disease epidemiology from Yale University in 1987, and his bachelor of arts (BA) in biology from Lawrence University in Wisconsin in 1983.


ASTHO is the national nonprofit organization representing the public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. territories and freely associated states, and the District of Columbia, as well as the more than 100,000 public health professionals these agencies employ. ASTHO members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy and to ensuring excellence in public health practice.