Secretary Rick Brajer
Governor Pat McCrory appointed Rick Brajer (see below for pronunciation) to serve as Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), effective August 14, 2015. DHHS is a cabinet-level agency with approximately 15,000 employees and an annual budget of $20 billion.
A forward looking and ethically centered leader, Brajer brings to this role a deep sense of stewardship and a heart for service to the citizens of North Carolina. He believes that each individual is inherently blessed with talents, and the role of leadership is to release the potential of both the people and the organization.
Brajer comes to DHHS after two decades of serving in leadership roles in the healthcare and medical technology industries. These roles have ranged from change leader in public and private equity environments to entrepreneurial leader in a venture backed environment.
The early foundation of his career was built at Procter & Gamble and at McKinsey & Company, environments deeply ingrained with proud teams, proud cultures and fact-based decision making.
From 1990 to 2002, Brajer held various leadership roles at Becton Dickinson and Company, in Europe and in the U.S., ultimately serving as Executive Officer and President of the company’s diagnostics sector.
From 2003 to 2013, he served as the CEO and director of LipoScience, Inc., a personalized diagnostics company which established a new clinical standard of care in cardiovascular management. He led the company from turn-around in 2003 to IPO in 2013.
Most recently, Brajer, as CEO and director, led the restructuring of ProNerve, Inc., an intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring company providing services to health care facilities and professionals in the United States.
From his 25 years of experience in health care, Brajer brings strengths in change leadership, shaping strategy, attracting and developing talent and putting in place the systems and culture that drive execution.
He places strong emphasis on accountability, collaboration and service and uses these values to build meaningful relationships and engagement with stakeholders.
Brajer earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University and a Master of Business Administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Brajer has been active in the community, serving most recently as chairman of Habitat for Humanity of Wake County. He currently serves on the Board of Visitors at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
He is the son of Yugoslavian immigrants, who spoke with immeasurable pride of being naturalized citizens of the United States - a country they believed (as does he) to be the greatest country on Earth.
*Pronunciation of Brajer rhymes with Major.