Advisory Committees

Texas Capitol Rotunda

Advisory committees provide valuable input regarding programs, policies, and rules as the agency seeks to become more responsive and effective in addressing needs. DSHS works together with advisory committees to ensure that Texans have access to effective public health services and that all Texans live and work in safe, healthy communities. Advisory committees may be called committees, councils, boards, or task forces.

Advisory Committees and Councils

Printable Advisory Committee Lists (PDF)

Committee Name Description Contact
Advisory Committees and Councils

Antimicrobial Stewardship
Regional Advisory Committees


Committees in each of Texas’ eight public health regions promote the appropriate use of antimicrobials, thereby improving patient outcomes and slowing the spread of antimicrobial resistance. 

Committee Email:

Vanessa Pierce

Human Immunodeficiency Virus
Medication Advisory Committee


Advises in the development of procedures and guidelines for the Texas HIV Medication Program. Reviews program's goals and aims, evaluates ongoing efforts, and recommends short-range and long-range goals and objectives. 

Rachel Sanor

Texas Maternal Mortality and
Morbidity Review Committee

Studies and reviews cases of pregnancy-related deaths and trends in severe maternal morbidity; determines the feasibility of task force study of several maternal morbidities; and makes recommendations to help reduce the incidence of pregnancy-related deaths and severe maternal morbidity in Texas. 

Committee Email:

Lauren Cenac
Sarah Beard

Medical Advisory Board 

Assists the Department of Public Safety in determining whether an applicant for a driver's license or a license holder is capable of safely operating a motor vehicle; or whether an applicant or holder of a private security commission or a license to carry a concealed handgun is capable of exercising sound judgment concerning the proper use and storage of a handgun. 

Jorie Klein

Newborn Screening
Advisory Committee


Advises DSHS regarding strategic planning, policy, rules, and services related to newborn screening.

Committee Email:

Aimee Millangue

Preparedness Coordinating Council

Advises and assists the Department of State Health Services as a multidisciplinary strategic review forum concerning topics related to preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation activities in Texas at the state level as they pertain to Emergency Support Function (ESF)-8 (Public Health and Medical).

Sandra Nava

Dana Birnberg


Promotor(a) Community Health Worker Training and Certification Advisory Committee 

Advises DSHS on rules concerning training and regulation of promotores or community health workers.

Beatrice Smith 

Frank Luera  

Public Health Funding
and Policy Committee


Defines core public health services a local health entity should provide in a county or municipality; evaluates public health in the state and identifies initiatives for areas that need improvement; identifies funding sources available to local health entities; establishes public health policy priorities; and makes recommendations to DSHS annually.


Glenna Laughlin


Sickle Cell Task Force 

Studies and advises the department on implementing the recommendations made in the 2018 Sickle Cell Advisory Committee Report published by the Sickle Cell Advisory Committee, or any other report the Executive Commissioner determines is appropriate. 

Aimee Millangue

State Child Fatality Review Committee 

Develops an understanding of the causes and incidences of child deaths. Identifies procedures within the agencies represented on the committee to reduce the number of preventable child deaths.  Promotes public awareness and makes recommendations to the Governor and Legislature for changes in law, policy, and practice to reduce the number of preventable child deaths.

Sarah Blezinger

Jia Benno

State Preventive Health
Advisory Committee


Works with DSHS in the development and implementation of the state plan for the Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant.

Laura Bianco

Stock Epinephrine
Advisory Committee


Examines and reviews the administration of epinephrine auto-injectors to a person experiencing an anaphylactic reaction on a campus of a school district, an open-enrollment charter school, a private school, or an institution of higher education.

Hayden Evans

Texas School Health
Advisory Committee


Advises Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) on school health matters as described below:

  1. Establishes a leadership role for DSHS in the support for and delivery of coordinated school health programs and school health services,

  2. Uses the findings of the analysis of the student physical fitness assessment instrument adopted by the Texas Education Agency in:

    A. Assessing the effectiveness of coordinated health programs provided by school districts and 
    B. Developing recommendations for modifications to coordinated health program requirements or related curriculum. 

Hayden Evans 

Tobacco Settlement Permanent Trust Account Administration
Advisory Committee


Advises DSHS on program rules and reviews results of any audit conducted or any dispute filed concerning Tobacco Settlement Proceeds.

Committee Email:

Elaine Quinn McHard

Toxic Substances Coordinating Committee

Protects and promotes the health and environment of Texas through the prevention and control of adverse health and environmental effects related to toxic substances and harmful agents.

Heidi Bojes

Youth Camp Advisory Committee

Provides advice on the development of standards, procedures, and rules to implement the Youth Camp Act.

Jeff Mantia

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Governor-Appointed Councils, Committees, and Task Forces

Printable Advisory Committee Lists (PDF)

Committee Name Description Contact
Governor-Appointed Councils, Committees, and Task Forces

Governor's EMS and Trauma
Advisory Council


Provides professional advice to the EMS regulatory and EMS and Trauma systems programs. Serves as a forum for stakeholder input. Reviews and recommends changes to rules, assesses the need for EMS in the rural areas of the state, and develops a strategic plan for refining the educational requirements for certification and maintaining certification as EMS personnel. 

Jorie Klein


Texas Center for Nursing
and Workforce Studies


Guides in the accuracy of reporting nursing workforce data and research results; Develop priorities and an operations plan for the Center for Nursing and Workforce Studies (CNWS). Provides policy recommendations to assure an adequate nursing workforce for the State of Texas. Identifies other issues concerning nursing professionals in Texas that need further study.

Pamela Lauer

Texas Council on
Alzheimer's Disease 
and Related Disorders


Advises and recommends needed actions for the benefit of persons with Alzheimer's disease and related disorder and their caregivers; disseminates information on services and related activities; coordinates services and activities of state agencies, associations, and other service providers; and encourages statewide coordinated research. 

Program Email:

Julie Ketelsen

Rachel Wiseman

Texas Council on Cardiovascular
Disease and Stroke


Develops a plan to reduce the morbidity, mortality, and economic burden of cardiovascular disease and stroke in Texas. Conducts health education, public awareness, and community outreach. Coordinates activities among agencies to improve access to treatment. Develops a database of recommendations for treatment and care. Collects and analyzes information related to cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Program Email:

Julie Ketelsen  

Rachel Wiseman

Texas Diabetes Council

Addresses issues affecting people with diabetes. Advises the Legislature on legislation that is needed to develop and maintain a statewide system of quality education services for all people with diabetes and health care professionals who offer diabetes treatment and education.

Program Email:

Julie Ketelsen

Rachel Wiseman

Texas Radiation Advisory Board

Provides technical guidance and advice on radiation programs to DSHS, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Railroad Commission of Texas, and Texas Board of Medical Examiners.

Gem Naivar

Statewide Health Coordinating Council

Ensures that health care services and facilities are available to all citizens in an orderly and economical manner. Based on these planning activities, makes recommendations to the Governor and Legislature through the Texas State Health Plan. 

Committee Email:

Lissette Curry

Task Force on
Infectious Disease
Preparedness and Response

The Task Force on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response is an advisory panel the governor created to provide expert, evidence-based assessments, protocols, and recommendations related to state responses to infectious diseases, including Ebola, and serve as a reliable and transparent source of information and education for Texas leadership and citizens. 

Committee Email:
Phone: 512-969-0428

Nathan Gauldin

Task Force of
Border Health Officials


Identifies and raises awareness of health issues impacting border communities and establishes policy priorities to enhance border public health, creating a healthy binational community. Makes recommendations to the commissioner for short-term and long-term border health improvement plans.

Guillermo Zenizo Lindsey

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Are advisory committee meetings open to the public? 
In most instances, advisory committee meetings are open to the public and subject to the Open Meetings Act ( Government Code, Chapter 551). Some advisory committees hold closed sessions to discuss cases or activities of a confidential nature. Open meeting notices are posted on the Secretary of State's website. You may also find advisory committee meeting dates, times, and locations (or links) by viewing the opening meetings schedule. You can sign up to receive notifications about open meetings as well.

Are advisory committee meetings broadcast live? 
HB 630, 85th Legislature, Regular Session, 2017, directs each health and human services agency to broadcast live video and audio of open meetings and to provide access to archived video and audio of meetings on the agency's website by 2023. 

Using the Microsoft Teams platform, all DSHS advisory committees are broadcasting open meetings and you can view the scheduled Live and Archived Webcast Meetings.  The public may also join any open meeting by telephone in person or remotely with the phone number and location provided in the meeting notice.

How can I provide feedback to an advisory committee? 
You can make a public comment at an advisory committee meeting. There is time on the agenda for public comment at each open meeting. Please note there may be a time limit for comments.  Instructions for public comment will be provided before the meeting or by contacting the point of contact named on the posted meeting agenda 72 hours before the meeting as required by law. Some committees also provide opportunities for written comment. Check with the meeting contact listed online for more information. 

How do I apply for membership on an advisory committee?
There are more than 25 advisory committees that provide advice on agency rules, policies, and programs. Member appointments are made by the DSHS Commissioner, the Health and Human Services (HHS) Executive Commissioner, the Governor, or other legislative officers and vary by committee. You can find open positions, how to apply, and applications for membership below, at HHS Advisory Committees, and on individual advisory committee pages.

Current Advisory Committee Openings

The DSHS Texas Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Review Committee (MMMRC) is currently seeking members. If you are interested in the statewide effort to improve health outcomes and reduce disparities for pregnant and postpartum women in Texas, you may be interested in joining the MMMRC. DSHS is currently accepting committee membership applications for the following new or vacant positions:

  • Community member with experience in a relevant health care field, including a field involving the analysis of health care data, who must represent a rural area of this state,
  • Community member with experience in a relevant health care field, including a field involving the analysis of health care data, who must represent an urban area of this state,
  • Physician specializing in emergency care,
  • Physician specializing in cardiology,
  • Physician specializing in anesthesiology,
  • Physician specializing in oncology, and
  • Representative of a managed care organization.

About the MMMRC 

Texas Health and Safety, Code Chapter 34 directs the MMMRC to study and review:  

  • Cases of pregnancy-related deaths,
  • Trends, rates, or disparities in pregnancy-related deaths and severe maternal morbidity, 
  • Health conditions and factors that disproportionately affect higher at-risk populations, and 
  • Best practices and programs operating in other states that have reduced rates of deaths related to pregnancy. 

The DSHS Commissioner will appoint members to the committee to serve a six-year term or to complete the term of a current vacancy. Terms may be shortened or lengthened to comply with statute. State law requires DSHS to include committee members who represent Texas’ diversity. For this reason, DSHS will consider each applicant’s qualifications, background, demographic characteristics, and interest in serving on the committee.

You may submit the completed application form by email, mail, or fax. 

Application deadline is November 30, 2023, 11:59 p.m.

For more information about the committee or about applying to be on the committee, contact the MMMRC at  

New Advisory Committee Member Training Modules

New DSHS Advisory Committee Members are required to complete training within 90 days of appointment to a committee. Below are five PowerPoint Training Modules* for new member orientation. 

*Webinar training modules are currently being revised.

Additional Training and Resources

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Advisory Committee Updates

To sign up for updates, enter your email address. Under Subscription Topics, click the [+/-] next to DSHS and select DSHS Advisory Committees.