Governor LePage Announces Ricker Hamilton as Acting DHHS Commissioner

May 26, 2017

For Immediate Release: Friday, May 26, 2017
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage announced today the appointment of Ricker Hamilton, who now serves as Deputy Commissioner of Programs at the Department of Health and Human Services, as acting Commissioner of DHHS.

“I am pleased to appoint Ricker as acting commissioner of DHHS,” said Governor LePage. “He has been actively involved in reforming welfare, improving services for the truly needy and bringing fiscal responsibility and accountability to a department that was plagued by massive shortfalls under previous administrations. Ricker will provide a wealth of experience and a steady hand to guide DHHS as the department continues to improve and reform the programs that are vital to so many Mainers.”

Hamilton has 40 years of experience in management, program development, strategic planning and social work in programs that provide services for children and families, substance abuse, mental health, sexual assault and domestic violence, aging and disability and acute psychiatric care.

As Deputy Commissioner of Programs at DHHS since 2013, Hamilton has managed and directed the Offices of Aging and Disability Services, Child and Family Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, Dorothea Dix Psychiatric Center and Riverview Psychiatric Center. He also served as program administrator for adult protective services at DHHS and as an instructor at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, where he developed a curriculum on elder abuse.

Hamilton received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Saint Anselm College in 1976 and his Master of Social Work degree from Boston College in 1984.

Additionally, the Governor announced Alec Porteous will serve as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer at the Department of Health and Human Services. Porteous joined the LePage Administration as deputy commissioner of finance in May 2014.

“Alec has a diverse background in the private and government sectors and has been integral in guiding the department to stable financial footing. He will continue to be a strong, reform-minded leader within the department,” said Governor LePage.

Porteous previously worked as a policy advisor for Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Washington, D.C. on Wall Street reforms and the Consumer Protection Act. He also worked as an associate at Lehman Brothers/Barclays Capital to provide strategic and financial advice to clients, including Proctor & Gamble, Hormel and Unilever. Prior to joining DHHS, Porteous was vice president at Harpswell Capital Advisors in New Gloucester, Maine.

He also served from 2011 to 2013 as state office representative in Portland for U.S. Senator Susan Collins and as her campaign finance director during her 2013 reelection campaign. Porteous received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Colby College in 2002 and his Master of Business Administration from Cornell University in 2007.