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Clayton Appointed State Epidemiologist

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Thursday, November 16, 2017

CONTACT:  Kim Malsam-Rysdon, (605) 773-3361


      Clayton Appointed State Epidemiologist


PIERRE, S.D. – Secretary of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon announced today that Dr. Joshua Clayton will serve as South Dakota’s next state epidemiologist. Clayton replaces Dr. Lon Kightlinger who retired earlier this month after serving 20 years with the Department.

“Translating data into action is an essential part of our Department’s mission to promote, protect and improve the health of every South Dakotan,” said Malsam-Rysdon. “I’m excited for Dr. Clayton to join us in this important work.”   

Clayton, a South Dakota native joins the Department from the Indiana State Department of Health where he served as deputy state epidemiologist and director of the state’s Epidemiology Resource Center. Dr. Clayton received his undergraduate degree from South Dakota State University and master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Michigan—Ann Arbor.

 “I look forward to working for all South Dakotans to improve the health and well-being of people and their communities,” said Clayton.

Prior to joining the Indiana Department of Health, Clayton served with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer assigned to the state of Tennessee. Earlier in his career, he spent five years at the South Dakota Department of Health working in the disease prevention and public health preparedness programs.


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