California Governor Gavin Newsom's 'vaccine czar' is leaving her state post in favor of a private-sector gig in San Francisco.
On Wednesday, Yolanda Richardson announced that she was leaving her post as secretary of the Government Operations Agency to head San Francisco's Medi-Cal plan. Her last day on the state payroll reportedly will be March 2nd, after sending an email to colleagues announcing her leave to the Bay Area. "I am grateful for the opportunity the Governor gave me to work on so many important projects (and by that I mean all of you got to work on), and serving in this administration was one of the most rewarding and exciting periods of my career," she wrote on Wednesday.
During her tenure with the state, Richardson reportedly was a key figure in shifting traditional public-sector employees to a home-based employment model in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. Just days after her initial swearing-in, she was tasked with a number of key roles for the state of California in COVID-19 related work, and specialized in low-income community vaccine distribution.
She is the third prominent figure of Governor Newsom's administration to resign from their title within the last week, following former Surgeon General Dr. Nadine Harris Burke and Director Rita Saenz of the Employment Development Department.