Politics & Government

Beshear appoints commissioner for behavioral health department

Gov. Steve Beshear announced Friday that Mary Reinle Begley, the Inspector General at the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, has been named commissioner of the cabinet's Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities.

Begley will succeed Acting Commissioner Betsy Dunnigan, who will retire at the end of October. Dunnigan has been serving in that capacity since June 6. She had intended to retire in August, but postponed her departure until an appointment could be made.

The Department for Behavioral Health provides services and support for individuals with needs related to mental illness, intellectual disability or other developmental disability. It oversees the operations of the state's regional psychiatric hospitals, including Eastern State Hospital in Lexington.

Begley has served as the cabinet's Inspector General since January 1, 2010. Her appointment is effective Oct. 16. Her successor has not yet been named.