Teller County Public Health hires nurse practioner Michelle Wolff as new director – Colorado Springs Gazette

The Teller County Board of County Commissioners last week appointed Michelle Wolff, a nurse practitioner with nearly two decades of health care experience, as director of Teller County Public Health and Environment.

She takes over from interim director Martha Hubbard, who had headed Public Health since January, according to a news release. Wolff will be paid $88,497 a year; her appointment took effect Nov. 1.

Wolff received a bachelor of science degree in nursing from the Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Beth-El College of Nursing and Health Sciences at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, the release said. She also has a master’s degree in nursing from the University of Cincinnati.

Over 18 years, Wolff has worked as a certified nurse’s assistant, registered nurse and nurse practitioner. She specializes in obstetrics and gynecology, along with nutrition and integrative health. Her background includes experience in surgery, trauma and women’s health.

Wolff also has longtime ties to Teller County; she’s part of the Markus family that has lived and worked in the community for more than 80 years. A brother, Jake Markus, is a Teller County deputy sheriff.

“She has a long family history in our county and, in addition to her incredible medical experience, understands the people of Teller County, our values, and our lifestyle,” Bob Campbell, who chairs the Teller County Board of County Commissioners and Board of Health, said in the release.

Wolff’s appointment follows a series of leadership changes for Teller County Public Health.

In January, newly elected Teller County Commissioners removed Jacque Revello as the agency’s head.

They replaced her on an interim basis with Hubbard, who had led Public Health for five years before retiring in 2017. Hubbard had joined the agency in 1995.

“When you are faced with a leadership change you want to be sure you don’t create a vacuum,” said Commissioner Erik Stone told Hubbard at the Oct. 28 Teller County Commissioners meeting. “You were a catalyst for confidence with your department and our county.”

Hubbard, who came on board during the pandemic, rallied her department and initiated vaccines clinics for COVID-19 around the county, hiring dozens of vaccinators to help administer the shots.

“You developed a vaccination plan that was in coordination with the Office of Emergency Management — you want to talk about slick, efficient, safe, and quite frankly, loving,” Stone said.

Hubbard also arranged to have mental-health counselors on hand. “There were people at the clinics who had not been out of their homes in nearly a year,” Stone said. “They were suffering from anxiety, mental anguish and depression. You truly did exemplify what a public servant is.”

Stone turned his attention to Wolff. “Michelle, you are stepping into some pretty big shoes,” he said. “But hearing from Martha, you’ve got the heart. I really appreciate the experience you bring to the position, and we are glad to have you on board.”

In her introduction of Wolff, Hubbard noted the large audience that included her husband and her brother, Teller County Deputy Jake Markus and their parents, Carole and Darrel Markus. After the ceremony, Undersheriff Stan Bishop presented Wolff with a bouquet of flowers from the sheriff’s department.

“We couldn’t have asked for anyone better to take on this position. She was born and bred here,” Hubbard said of Wolff. “She did work down the hill for a time but we’ll forgive her for that. But now she’s come back home!”

Commissioner Dan Williams added, “It’s a happy sad day for us. You (Hubbard) stepped up in the middle of the pandemic and your leadership is incredible.”

Wolff responded, “I am excited to work with the community, honored and blessed to be taking on this position in a difficult time.”

As a nurse practitioner, Wolff specializes in obstetrics and gynecology along with nutrition and integrative health.

“Her credentials as a nurse practitioner will be a bonus for our board of health and they can rely on her solid her interpretation of medical issues, COVID or whatever,” Hubbard said. “She will be able to explore the conditions and give good advice.”

Among Wolff’s first forays into the community will be the vaccine clinic from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5 at Woodland Park Community Church, 800 Valley View Drive, Woodland Park (80863). Registration for the vaccines is at tellercovid.com/vaccine-scheduling.

Rich Laden is a reporter for The Gazette.

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