- Associated Press - Friday, February 13, 2015

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has selected a Florida Democrat to lead Illinois’ troubled Department of Children and Family Services.

George Sheldon ran Florida’s Department of Children and Families from 2008 to 2011. He’s credited with expanding adoption opportunities for gays and lesbians, reducing the number of children in state custody and making state records more easily accessible.

Sheldon also served as an assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under President Barack Obama.

He wasn’t immediately reached for comment.

Rauner spokesman Lance Trover confirmed the appointment to The Associated Press on Friday.

Illinois’ child welfare agency has seen seven directors in three years, with its most recent director resigning last month. It’s also faced allegations of abuse, neglect, violence and assault at residential facilities.

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