Skip to main navigation Skip to main content

Who We Are

​The Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) develops, monitors and operates public health programs and activities designed to improve the lives of residents and visitors through injury, sickness and disease prevention, promotion of healthy lifestyles and health protection efforts. 

DPH supervises and assists local boards of health and 61 local health departments serving all 120 Kentucky counties. The department relies on local health departments to carry out core public health activities required by statute or regulation and to provide preventive services to specific populations mandated by budget appropriations. 

DPH has identified the following seven core public health services that are required at the local level, either through local health departments or by another provider:  

  • Enforcement of public health regulations
  • Surveillance of public health
  • Communicable disease control
  • Public health education
  • Public health policy development
  • Reduction of risk to families and children
  • Disaster preparedness 

Programs &

Steven J. Stack, MD, MBA, FACEP, Commissioner Department for Public Health

Com. Stack portrait

Steven J. Stack, MD, MBA, FACEP was appointed commissioner of the KentuckyDepartment for Public Health by Gov. Andy Beshear in February, 2020. He resides in Lexington, Ky and is a board-certified emergency physician.

For more than 20 years Dr. Stack has been a leader in the medical profession. He has served on boards of directors and in senior leadership roles for numerous geographic and specialty medical societies. In 2006, he became the first emergency physician ever elected to the American Medical Association (AMA) board of trustees, subsequently serving as board chair and in 2015-2016 as the youngest AMA president since 1854.

Dr. Stack has served as medical director of multiple emergency departments, including Saint Joseph East, Lexington, Saint Joseph Mt. Sterling, KY and Baptist Memorial Hospital, Memphis, Tenn. He has more than 18 years of emergency medicine administrative and clinical practice experience in Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee.

In 2018, Dr. Stack joined The University of Tennessee Haslam College of Business as adjunct professor. In this role, he lectures on healthcare policy and the mechanics of advocacy to physicians in the physician executive MBA program and to both physician and non-physician healthcare leaders enrolled in executive education programs.

Dr. Stack has focused experience in health information technology (IT). A nationally recognized advocate, he bridges bedside care with governmental policy and has served on numerous federal advisory committees for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology from 2010 -2016. Additionally, he served from 2012 - 2016 as board member and secretary of eHealth Initiative, a Washington, DC-based non-profit association improving health care through the advancement of health IT.

His other areas of expertise include emergency department and hospital management, health system reform, physician licensure and regulation and healthcare anti-trust issues. Dr. Stack has extensive experience in policymaking and advocacy at federal, state and county levels and before legislative bodies and executive branch regulatory agencies. He also is a skilled public spokesperson and longtime advocate for universal access to affordable and high quality healthcare.

Born and raised in Cleveland, Dr. Stack graduated magna cum laude from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass. where he was a Henry Bean Scholar for classical studies. He returned to Ohio to complete medical school and emergency medicine residency at The Ohio State University before moving to Memphis to begin his clinical practice. In 2006,Dr. Stack and his family relocated to Lexington. In December 2017 he completed his MBA at UT Knoxville Haslam College of Business.

Dr. Stack is married and the proud father of one daughter. His wife, Tracie, is an MD, PhD and practicing board-certified allergy/asthma/ immunology specialist. In his leisure time, Dr. Stack enjoys the study of classical Greek and Roman history, United States presidential history, photography and traveling with his wife and daughter.

Contact Information