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Stephen Espy Named Chief Data Officer

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Stephen Espy has been named director of the Office of Informatics and Analytics (OIA) and chief data officer (CDO) for the Tennessee Department of Health. In this position, Espy will provide oversight of the management and governance of the public health data for the state.

“Stephen joins a team of data professionals who are dedicated to ensuring public health data is available to inform strategies, policies, and best practices,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “His years of experience in health care informatics brings opportunities to establish new processes and advancements for data management and data strategy for the department.”

As chief data officer, Espy will oversee activities within OIA to guide data best practices, analysis and data sharing in support of TDH’s mission to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of Tennessee families. OIA consists of several units that work on data governance and analytics. OIA also includes the Institutional Review Board (IRB), which is an FDA-designated group that reviews and monitors biomedical research involving human subjects and their data. This council serves to protect patients from the inappropriate or unethical use of patient health information. Espy will also support the opioid overdose surveillance to support prevention, education, and intervention to reduce opioid-related morbidity and mortality in Tennessee.

“It is an honor to serve Tennessee and public health in this role,” said Espy. “Data is often the underlying thread that weaves through public health informing innovation and guiding best practices. I am thrilled to join this team of professionals as we work to improve health outcomes for Tennesseans through data-driven solutions.”

Espy joined TDH in August 2021 after serving as the director of the Biomedical Informatics Core team at LeBonheur Children’s Hospital Children’s Foundation Research Institute. Espy also served as the lead software architect at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital for 17 years. Espy received his undergraduate degree from Rhodes College in Psychology and his graduate degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Computer Science.

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. Learn more about TDH services and programs at www.tn.gov/health. 

Connect with TDH on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn @TNDeptofHealth!

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