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Acting Surgeon General Named To Replace Armstrong

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
Florida Department of Health
The Florida Channel
Dr. Celeste Philip, acting Surgeon General

Gov. Rick Scott has appointed Dr. Celeste Philip as Florida’s acting Surgeon General.

Philip replaces Dr. John Armstrong, who was the Surgeon General since 2012.

Armstrong, who the governor's office said handed in his resignation, was not confirmed for a second term by the Florida Senate before the session ended last week. He became the first agency head since 1995 to face losing his job by not being confirmed.

In a statement, Scott thanked Armstrong for his service and for his commitment to making Florida a healthy and safe state during his career.

Philip has held various positions within the Department of Health since 2008. She has served as interim director in three county health departments and as interim bureau chief for the DOH Bureau of Communicable Diseases. 

According to a statement from the DOH, Philips previously served as medical director for the Department in Polk County and at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) as an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer.