Rutgers alumna Judith M. Persichilli confirmed as first nurse to head New Jersey Department of Health

January 16, 2020

Judith M. Persichilli, recently confirmed as state commissioner of health, received the 2019 Outstanding Alumni Award from Rutgers School of Nursing Alumni Association.



Rutgers alumna Judith M. Persichilli (BSN, MA, RN) was confirmed by the New Jersey Senate as the commissioner of the Department of Health on January 9, Governor Phil Murphy announced.

Persichilli, whose nomination was announced by Murphy in June 2019, had served as acting commissioner since August 2019. She is the first registered nurse to become the state’s health commissioner.

A highly accomplished health care leader, Persichilli received the 2019 Outstanding Alumni Award from Rutgers School of Nursing Alumni Association, presented at the association’s annual Scholarship and Awards Gala, held last November. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing summa cum laude from Rutgers University in 1976.

Murphy lauded Persichilli as a highly respected member of her field with a remarkable record of proven success. “I look forward to continuing our work together to ensure a stronger and fairer New Jersey for all,” he said.

Persichilli was president emerita of CHE Trinity Health and most recently served as the acting CEO of University Hospital. Prior to that role, she was interim president and CEO of CHE Trinity Health. She was president and CEO of Catholic Health East and served for eight years as CEO at St. Francis Medical Center in Trenton.

She is a member of the Georgian Court Board of Trustees. Persichilli has also served on the board of directors of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute and the Audit and Compliance Committee of the Board of Bayada Nursing Agency. She was inducted into the New Jersey State Nurses Association Hall of Honor in 2006.