Welcome, Francisco Ruiz, ONAP’s New Director - A Message from Kaye Hayes

Content From: B. Kaye Hayes, MPA, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Infectious Disease and Director, Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesPublished: April 26, 20243 min read


Left: B. Kaye Hayes, MPA, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Infectious Disease and Director, OIDP; Right: Francisco Ruiz, Director, Office of National AIDS Policy, The White House

We are already more than 100 days into 2024, and I’m reminded that we must continue pushing forward while keeping our foot on the pedal to ensure our HIV response builds on our successes and continues to work to address unmet needs and emerging challenges. To assist with these efforts, the White House has appointed a new director to lead the Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP), and I am honored to welcome Francisco Ruiz to this position.

He takes the helm as the first Latino to serve in this role and as an individual whose history and lived experience demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to equity across the diverse communities impacted by HIV. As the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Infectious Disease and the Director of the Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy (OIDP), I am looking forward to working with Francisco and ONAP to advance the goals of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS) and the Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. (EHE) initiative as we continue to approach our efforts through a syndemic lens that recognizes the overlapping health conditions of HIV, substance use, mental health, viral hepatitis, and sexually transmitted infections, particularly the crisis of syphilis and congenital syphilis, and the social and structural factors that give rise to them. 

The enthusiasm for this announcement extends to ADM Rachel Levine, MD, Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, who shares, “I am pleased to welcome Francisco Ruiz to the White House Office of National AIDS Policy. Francisco brings a wealth of knowledge and experiences vital to shaping the implementation of the Biden Administration’s priorities, from the NHAS to our collective efforts to reduce HIV-related inequities and address stigma and discrimination. I look forward to working with him in support of President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2025 Budget request for HIV programs, including a mandatory Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Delivery Program.”

Commitment to Coordination and Community Engagement

Francisco has worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) since 2013. In his former role as the Senior Advisor for Program Innovation and Coordination within the Division of HIV Prevention, he played an integral role in shaping and advancing programs and partnerships across the Division’s ten branches and six offices. Additionally, he advanced the agency’s engagement with community partners, ensuring that impacted populations were part of message development and the creation of new initiatives. Before joining the federal government, he worked at NASTAD (National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors), collaborating extensively with health departments to address the impact of HIV among key populations, including Black, Hispanic/Latinx, and LGBTQ+ communities. His focus on engaging and working with diverse communities, his experience working in public health, and his commitment to addressing health disparities and inequities will continue to be of great benefit to the HIV service community and those who continue to work toward ending the HIV epidemic.

I offer my heartfelt congratulations to Francisco on this well-deserved appointment. My office and I, along with many others committed to ending the HIV epidemic, are excited and look forward to our future collaboration.

Learn More

We encourage you to read a recent blog available in English and Spanish about Francisco’s appointment by Neera Tanden, Chair of the Domestic Policy Council and Domestic Policy Advisor to the President, The White House.