State Medical Director Dr. Joseph Acierno has resigned only a couple of days after winning a bruising confirmation vote in the Unicameral in which a number of state senators called him arrogant and unresponsive.
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services stated Acierno turned in his resignation to Gov. Pete Ricketts on Friday.
It took two tries to confirm Acierno in the legislature. On the first vote this past week, Acierno fell three votes shy of the 25 needed for confirmation, an extremely rare rejection of a gubernatorial nominee. The Unicameral reconsidered his nomination a day later and confirmed him on a 34-6 vote.
Critics in the Unicameral stated Acierno had been arrogant and not responsive during his tenure, dating back to the Heineman Administration. Gov. Dave Heineman appointed Acierno in 2013. Gov. Pete Ricketts reappointed him in December. Acierno had been Deputy Chief Medical Officer for about six years before being promoted to Chief Medical Officer. He was both an attorney and a physician.