Public Health Director Corwin Porter honored upon retirement

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– The Board of Supervisors and others praised and honored Public Health Director Corwin Porter today for his 33 years of public service, 32 of them with San Bernardino County, as he approaches his long-planned retirement on March 27.

“Corwin has worked tirelessly to protect the health of our county community for more than three decades, and for the past year he has been the calm and steady voice of the county’s effort to overcome COVID-19,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “It’s hard to think of anyone who deserves to finally hang up his coat and tie more than he does. We wish Corwin and his family all of the best.”

The Board of Supervisors appointed Arrowhead Regional Medical Center Chief Operating Officer Andrew Goldfrach to serve as interim public health director upon Porter’s retirement while a recruitment is undertaken to find a permanent replacement. Goldfrach has been a key coordinator of the county’s successful COVID-19 vaccination program. 

Porter has served as the director of the county Department of Public Health since May. He previously served as assistant public health director and as chief of the department’s Environmental Health Services Division. He began working for the county part-time in 1987 while going to college. He worked for Riverside County for one year in 1990 and then returned to San Bernardino County in 1991.

“I feel a great deal of appreciation for the opportunities I have had to make a difference and leave a positive impact. I have gained so much from my years of service, perhaps much more than I gave,” Porter said. “Retiring now has been planned for quite some time. I have a long list of home projects, travel plans, family to visit and most of all I am excited to be able to spend quality time with my eight grandchildren.”

“Corwin displayed exceptional leadership throughout the course of this pandemic and is a true public servant,” said Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Dawn Rowe. “While it will be difficult to lose someone as talented as Corwin, I have great confidence in Andrew’s ability to lead our Public Health Department. San Bernardino County residents are fortunate to have such dedicated healthcare professionals working on their behalf.”

“Corwin helped our County navigate turbulent and uncharted waters over the course of the past year, and I truly appreciate his willingness to step into that role in the middle of a pandemic,” said Second District Supervisor Janice Rutherford. “Corwin has lead with integrity, compassion, intelligence, and common sense. He is a good, good person and we will miss him.”

“Corwin Porter stepped into his role as Director of Public Health during the most serious public health crisis in a century,” said First District Supervisor Paul Cook. “His dedication, expertise, and leadership helped save lives and guided San Bernardino County through challenging and unprecedented times. While he will certainly be missed at the Department of Public Health, I wish Corwin the best as he heads into retirement.”

“We are saddened to see Corwin retire from the Department of Public Health after 32 years of excellent service,” said Fifth District Supervisor Joe Baca, Jr. “In his tenure, he was able to build a culture of integrity and quality while developing staff to pursue leadership positions. I want to thank him for his leadership, guidance and availability to the community during COVID-19. Although saddened that he is leaving us, we congratulate this feat in his life. We look forward to having Andrew Goldfrach step into this role and to see where he will lead the department. Congratulations to you both!”

“Corwin’s character and his dedication to our county community and organization serve as a model that all of us who will continue to carry the public service torch would do well to emulate,” said County Chief Executive Officer Leonard X. Hernandez.

“What a journey this has been,” Porter said. “I will miss those I have worked with, cried with, and laughed with as we worked through some very challenging times along this road. I leave with gratitude and appreciation for the opportunities I have had to serve the residents of this vast county, and I appreciate the trust that was placed in me, as well as the support of a wonderful county structure full of talent.”

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