Estelle Richman serves as chief operating officer at the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Prior to joining HUD, Richman was the welfare secretary at the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, a position she held for seven years.
Richman’s has spent more than 25 years in the public-service sector. Before her role as welfare secretary, Richman was the first female managing director for the City of Philadelphia, where she oversaw 13 city departments. Prior to her appointment as managing director, Richman served as Philadelphia’s first director of social services.
Other roles Richman has held include City of Philadelphia’s commissioner of public health and deputy commissioner for mental health, mental retardation and substance abuse services; Southeast area director for the Office of Mental Health in the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare; and assistant director with the Positive Education Program (PEP) in Ohio, a day treatment school program for children and adolescents with behavior problems.
Richman has been honored for her advocacy efforts by the Alliance for the Mentally Ill and the American Psychiatric Association and the American Medical Association. In 1998, she also received the Ford Foundation/Good Housekeeping Award for Women in Government.