Background & Bio
Dr. Shirley Payne is the Assistant Commissioner for the Public Health Protection Commission at the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH). Her primary responsibility is to provide guidance and support to agency leadership and to the Emergency Preparedness, Environmental Public Health, Food Protection, Immunization, Lead & Healthy Homes, and Vital Records Divisions.
Prior to assuming the Assistant Commissioner role in November 2020, Dr. Payne worked in the Children’s Special Health Care Services (CSHCS) Division at IDOH for nine years, serving as the Division Director for seven years. She was responsible for managing Indiana’s CSHCS program, which is a supplemental coverage program that helps families of children with serious, chronic medical conditions pay for treatment related to their child’s condition. She also served as the state’s Title V Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs Director and was responsible for managing the special needs portion of the Title V Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant which included work around care coordination, transition to adulthood, developmental screening, and adverse childhood experiences.
Nationally, Dr. Payne is the immediate Past-President of the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs’ Board of Directors where she helps further their mission to protect and promote the optimal health of women, children, and families. She received a Maternal and Child Health Bureau Director’s Award in 2019 for noteworthy national level contributions to the health of infants, mothers, children, and children with special health care needs. Dr. Payne serves as President of the Domestic Violence Network Board in Indianapolis supporting their mission to change the culture that leads to domestic violence. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the Indiana University School of Public Health in the Applied Health Science Department.
Dr. Payne holds a doctorate in Health Behavior from the Indiana University School of Public Health. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Bachelor of Arts in African American and African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University. She also earned her Master of Public Health degree, with dual majors in Epidemiology and Behavioral Health Science, from the Indiana University School of Medicine.