A University of Virginia School of Medicine professor will continue working in Gov. Ralph Northam’s Cabinet as the state’s chief health czar.

Dr. M. Norman Oliver had been serving as acting state health commissioner since April. Northam announced Oliver’s appointment as health commissioner on Friday.

Previously, he was commissioner for population health at the Virginia Department of Health. He also was chairman of the family medicine department at U.Va.’s medical school.

Oliver has researched the role of racial discrimination, bias and prejudice in health disparities.

He received his medical degree and a master’s in medical anthropology at Case Western Reserve University, then trained in family medicine there. He also practiced family medicine in rural Alaska before joining U.Va. in 1998.

Northam had reappointed Dr. Marissa Levine as state health commissioner in January, but she resigned for personal reasons.

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