Brandon Nichols, a senior administrator with Los Angeles County’s Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), was named on Thursday as interim head of the department, according to several county sources. DCFS did not confirm the report.
Last month, DCFS Director Philip Browning announced that he was stepping down as head of DCFS after serving for more than five years. DCFS has a budget of $2.2 billion and oversees nearly 21,000 children placed in out-of-home care in the county.
Nichols had been serving as chief deputy director under Browning. According to county documents, Nichols oversaw budget, finance, administrative and policy issues for the department.
Prior to working at DCFS, Nichols worked at the Office of County Counsel, where he was lead attorney for the county in settling the Katie A. vs. Bonta class action lawsuit. The Katie A. suit dealt with the availability of intensive mental health services for children in foster care or at imminent risk of entering into care for both in Los Angeles County and across California.
Neil Zanville of DCFS’ Office of Public Affairs said that no official appointment had yet been made for the position.
Carl Finer contributed to this story.