Susan Fanelli has been the assistant director for the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) since June 22, 2015. This is a new position created in the Director's Office that has been established for the purpose of providing high-level management and coordination of projects involving intra-departmental collaboration on various cross-cutting topics such as health care reform, state and local governmental relations, public/private partnerships and other projects relating to public health. She had been the deputy director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness for CDPH since 2013. Prior to that, Fanelli served in several positions in that office since 2006, including acting deputy director and as the assistant deputy. Fanelli was a key collaborator with public and private stakeholders to develop the comprehensive statewide survey of hospitals, Statewide Public Health and Medical Care Surge Plan, and the Standards and Guidelines for Healthcare Delivery during Surge, a time when a surge of demand must be met by a surge in capabilities and capacities.
Fanelli served in several positions at the California Department of Health Services from 2002 - 2006, working in the Department of Health Services' Third Party Liability Branch and the Office of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Fanelli had also been the chief of the Program Support Section, managing the financial aspects of the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Office and overseeing the Hospital Preparedness Program.
Prior to working for the state of California, Fanelli was director of information services at the Institute for Fiduciary Education from 1996 – 2001. She was vice president and co-owner of Capitol Weekly, a newspaper dedicated to reporting on the state of California. She was president and instructor for Capitol Seminars and Consulting. Fanelli has a Master of Arts degree in Political Science/Public Service from the University of California, Davis. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, with a minor in Psychology.