The woman who tried, twice, to unseat Democratic Congressman Dave Loebsack will have a job in Governor-elect Terry Branstad’s administration. Branstad has asked Mariannette Miller-Meeks to serve as head of the Iowa Department of Public Health.
Miller-Meeks, who is an eye doctor, ran for Iowa’s second congressional district seat in 2008 and 2010. Miller-Meeks quit her opthalmology practice in 2009 to dedicate all her time to running for congress.
She’s been working at a free medical clinic in Cedar Rapids since the election.
Miller-Meeks was the first female faculty member in the University of Iowa’s Department of Ophthalmology and she was the first woman to serve as president of the Iowa Medical Society.
Miller-Meeks and her husband live in Ottumwa.
Branstad has also announced he intends to bring back the man who headed the Iowa Department of Human Services when Branstad was governor before. Charles Palmer was the head of the Department of Human Services from 1989 to 1999.
Both Palmer and Miller-Meeks must be confirmed by 34 of the 50 members of the Iowa Senate to hold the jobs. The Democratic Leader of the Iowa Senate has indicated Branstad’s choices for state agencies will win senate confirmation unless major questions pop up about a nominee.