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Sisolak appoints Cage as COVID-19 response chief

Gov. Steve Sisolak on Friday announced that Caleb Cage has been appointed as the state’s COVID-19 response director.

“Mr. Cage has proven invaluable to the state in its effort to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Sisolak said. “This new, expanded role will help propel the state of Nevada forward as we continue our gradual, phased-in reopening and fortify our response to this unprecedented public health crisis.

“Mr. Cage brings a wealth of experience that will ensure our federally supported, state managed and locally executed response plan is effective in the immediate and the long term.”

Cage, the former head of the state Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and most recently the assistant vice chancellor for workforce development and community colleges at the Nevada System of Higher Education, will help direct and coordinate the statewide response to COVID-19 through the end of December from the governor’s office. Cage’s new position is funded by federal dollars at no cost to the state.

This position will coordinate resources and the work across multiple state, local and federal entities to respond to COVID-19, including federal agencies, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; state agencies, including the Division of Public and Behavioral Health within the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, the Division of Emergency Management and the Nevada State Public Health Lab; and local agencies, including local emergency management, public health authorities and city and county officials.

The director will be responsible for coordinating all of these efforts, including a strong emphasis on testing effort and capacity; contact tracing; and the coordination of resources to support the robust, ongoing and expanding work in these areas across the state.

Cage is a native Nevadan who has served in various capacities in public service for the past 18 years. Immediately following college, he was commissioned as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army, serving in Germany and Iraq.

Upon returning to Nevada in 2007, Cage served in various capacities, including as a policy advisor in the lieutenant governor’s and governor’s offices in addition to leading the Nevada Office of Veterans Services and the Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. He lives in Reno with his wife and three children.

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