Governor Roy Cooper Visits Johnston County Health Department 

For Immediate Release: 

June 18, 2021
3:00 p.m.


Smithfield, NC -- Governor Roy Cooper toured the Johnston County Health Department in Smithfield today to see, first-hand, the great work the Health Department staff is doing to keep all of Johnston County healthy and safe. Governor Cooper, guided around the facility by Health Department Director, Dr. Marilyn Pearson, saw several residents getting their COVID-19 vaccinations and also visited the emergency operation center located inside the Health Department.  

“As I always tell my staff, public health is a team sport and the strength of the team comes from our team members,” said Dr. Pearson. 

The Governor, along with local elected officials, health staff, Johnston County Board of Commissioners Chairman Chad Stewart, Commissioner Patrick Harris, Representative Donna White and Smithfield Mayor Andy Moore addressed the media following the tour.  Commissioner Ted Godwin and Councilman Marlon Lee were also in attendance.

“You can tell a great health leader who recognizes her team, the people that are doing the job on the ground every single day. I’m grateful to each and every one of you and, Dr. Pearson, I’m grateful for your leadership,” said Governor Cooper.

The Governor touted the outreach efforts by the Johnston County Health Department, which does critical work getting the vaccine to historically marginalized populations within the County.

Commissioner Harris also acknowledged how tirelessly the Health Department and the rest of the County has worked to battle the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Thank you for the opportunity to allow us to showcase the health professionals that have worked so diligently in the last year and four months to battle something we were all very concerned about.. I’m so proud of Dr. Pearson, Director Hubbard, our Sheriff's Department, our law enforcement agencies, the list goes on and on.”

Johnston County’s COVID-19 vaccination rate for fully vaccinated residents remains at 35 percent, but Dr. Pearson is optimistic the County will continue to see those numbers climb. For more information on the Johnston County Health Department or to learn how to receive a COVID-19 vaccine visit: or call 919-989-5200.


Photos from the event: