In June 2019, Governor J. Kevin Stitt appointed Justin B. Brown as Director of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, the state’s largest agency by workforce. In March 2020, the governor additionally appointed Brown as Cabinet Secretary of Human Services, serving thirty- three agencies, boards and commissions in the human services space. In August of 2022, after more than three years of service, Brown stepped down from the first appointment as Agency Director, focusing exclusively on his role as Secretary.
While at Oklahoma Human Services, Brown introduced a grassroots strategic planning effort and human services operating system known as the ‘True North.’ Because of this transformational approach, OKDHS was able to remain focused on the agency’s long-term strategies during the pandemic, instead of assuming a defensive posture during this time of dramatic disruption. As a strong relationship builder, Brown built a culture of true collaboration with state and federal agencies, local non-profits, philanthropic foundations, legislators and with the communities that the agency serves, aligning stakeholders in a common vision and with connected definitions of success.
In 2022, Secretary Brown was nominated to serve as Chairman of the American Public Human Services Association (APHSA) Leadership Council and as a member of the Governing Board of Directors. In addition to his public service, Secretary Brown has built a passion for serving seniors and children through non-profit organizations including the Alzheimer’s Association, Children’s Hospital Foundation, YMCA, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, among others.
Brown and his wife, Kelly, have been married for 21 years and have two children, Hannah and Ford.