- Associated Press - Monday, February 2, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Gov Pete Ricketts has named three finalists for the top job at the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

The governor’s office released the names Monday after a national search for a “transformational leader” within the department.

The candidates are Clarence Carter of Scottsdale, Arizona; David Newell of Omaha; and Courtney Phillips of Prairieville, Louisiana.

Carter recently served as director of the Arizona Department of Economic Security under Gov. Jan Brewer. Newell is the president and CEO of Nebraska Families Collaborative, a non-profit child welfare corporation in the Omaha area. Phillips serves as deputy secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals under Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Ricketts says he interviewed Sydney Squier of the New Mexico Human Services Department, but Squier was not chosen as a finalist.

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