Community Services Institute Announces Two Appointments

SPRINGFIELD — Community Services Institute (CSI) has named Dr. Susan Rogers director of clinical operations for its Springfield clinic, overseeing all aspects of therapeutic care, and also appointed Dr. Mark Gapen as director of CSI’s doctoral intern program. He also leads CSI’s neurofeedback treatment program.

Rogers has been on staff at CSI since 2007, serving roles as psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, training coordinator, and clinical psychology fellow. Her work helps outreach clinicians maintain appropriate boundaries, while engaging in the difficult task of outreach psychotherapy while remaining self-reflective, competent, and confident professionals. Rogers also has advanced training as a neurofeedback practitioner and has completed specialized training to work with individuals who struggle with problem gambling.

Rogers earned a doctorate in clinical psychology at Antioch University New England, and was valedictorian of her class at Southern Vermont College, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She is also a licensed mental-health counselor.

Gapen began his career working on an study of risks and resilience factors for PTSD in a large urban hospital in Atlanta. Additionally, he worked in the Atlanta Veterans Administration and community and academic health settings before beginning a two-year post-doctoral fellowship with Dr. Bessel van der Kolk at the Trauma Center in Boston.

During his fellowship, Gapen earned a certificate in traumatic stress studies, worked with chronically traumatized individuals of all ages, and was the research coordinator for a study investigating the effectiveness of neurofeedback in ameliorating the physiological symptoms associated with PTSD.

More recently, Gapen was the clinical research psychologist for the Uniformed Services Program at Brattleboro Retreat. In this role, he provided direct service to police, firefighters, active and retired military, corrections officers, and other uniformed service professionals.

Gapen has extensive experience working in multi-disciplinary settings and incorporates multiple contextual factors into his conceptualization of psychopathology. He is board-certified in neurofeedback. He earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Emory University.

Taps Nesteby to Head LGBTQ Services

NORTHAMPTON — Cooley Dickinson Health Care recently welcomed J. Aleah Nesteby to Northampton Family Practice at 22 Atwood Dr. in Northampton.

Nesteby comes to Cooley Dickinson from Baystate Health, where she has spent the past 10 years working to ensure availability of compassionate and non-judgmental health care for the LGBTQ community in Western Mass., and will function as Cooley Dickinson’s new director of LGBTQ Services. Her role will be both administrative and clinical, and fills a targeted need to improve access to healthcare and mental healthcare for lesbians and transgender people, as identified in Cooley Dickinson’s most recent Community Health Improvement Plan.

Nesteby received her master’s degree in Nursing from MGH Institute of Health Professions in Charlestown, and has pursued specialization in transgender health and LGBTQ health. She is a nationally recognized trans health provider; has led workshops, lectures, and forward-looking training programs for medical students and residents; and is a recipient of a Tufts University School of Medicine educational research grant for transgender student curriculums. She attended Antioch College during her undergraduate years, and worked in reproductive health and STI prevention in San Francisco prior to her time in Massachusetts.

“I believe that informed consent and collaborative treatment decisions are the cornerstones of quality patient-provider relationships,” Nesteby said. “I strive to meet every patient where they are at, and to tailor their care to ensure them the best possible health outcomes. I am committed to improving LGBTQ care for the patients in our community, as well as to ensuring a supportive and affirming work environment for all of our LGBTQ employees at Cooley Dickinson Health Care.”

Nesteby is a member of the World Professional Assoc. of Transgender Health and a provider-volunteer for the online peer-to-peer consultation service TransLine.

To make an appointment with Nesteby, call Northampton Family Practice at (413) 584-2178.

American Red Cross Promotes Garutti

SPRINGFIELD — Jennifer Garutti was recently named executive director of the American Red Cross of Western Massachusetts.

She joined the American Red Cross in 2015, bringing a wealth of volunteer-development, donor-development, and marketing and communications experience to her role as executive coordinator. When the executive director position became available in 2016, she was the choice of the Western Massachusetts chapter board of directors and her regional executive colleagues.

With a passion for the Red Cross, Garutti has pledged to build the local chapter’s capacity to serve Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire county families. She approaches this challenge as a mobilizer of disaster volunteers, armed-forces advocates, life-saving skills educators, blood donors, and financial contributors. She looks forward to working with these constituencies for a safe, healthy, and prepared Western Mass.

As a community volunteer herself, Garutti has long shared her marketing and photography skills with child-focused nonprofits including Angels Take Flight and Girls on the Run. She also contributes regularly to the BYO Blog, which promotes Springfield as a family-friendly city.

Pathlight Appoints Dyrkacz CFO, VP of Administration

SPRINGFIELD — Pathlight, a Pioneer Valley leader in residential and community services for people with intellectual disabilities, has named Anna Dyrkacz to be its chief financial officer and vice president of Administration.

Executive Director Ruth Banta announced the appointment this week. Pathlight provides a variety of services to people with disabilities through its programs throughout Western Mass., including Autism Connections, Specialized Home Care, Whole Children, an extensive residential division, and Valley Tees.

“We are thrilled to have Anna taking on the responsibilities of our financial operations,” said Banta. “Her extensive experience and knowledge of the healthcare industry will be a big asset to Pathlight.”

Dyrkacz has more than 15 years experience in the healthcare and human-services industry and came to Pathlight from a nursing home/retirement-community organization. She has also held leadership positions at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton and Kindred Healthcare of Springfield.

“What attracted me to Pathlight is its mission of helping those with disabilities and its role in the community,” said Dyrkacz. “I an proud to be working for an organization that is changing lives in such a powerful way.”

Dyrkacz has a bachelor’s degree and MBA from Western New England University, majoring in finance.

Pathlight has been providing programs and services to people with developmental disabilities since 1952. Its programs include residential homes, supports for independent living, family-based living, recreation, enrichment, employment supports, family resources, autism supports, and more.

Carson to Head Business Growth at Harvard Pilgrim

WELLESLEY — Michael Carson, a seasoned healthcare executive with broad leadership experience at some of the nation’s pre-eminent health plans, has been named chief business growth officer at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care. In this position, he will be responsible for financial and business performance, provider contracting, network management, health services, product development, sales, marketing, regional markets, and Medicare.

Most recently, Carson served as chief operating officer at ConcertoHealth, a multi-state medical group, where he was responsible for the company’s financial performance, including care delivery, clinical operations, growth and health-plan delegated utilization, care, quality, and revenue management.

Prior to Concerto, Carson served as president of Anthem’s Eastern Region Medicare business. He previously served as Amerigroup’s vice president of Medicare; held a wide variety of Medicaid corporate and health-plan leadership positions; and has served as vice president of Operations at Premera Blue Cross in Washington and executive director of Operations Development at Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Colorado.

“Michael’s background in health-plan and value-based medical-group management deepens Harvard Pilgrim’s focus on provider collaboration to achieve positive service, cost, and quality outcomes for our customers and network partners,” said Harvard Pilgrim President and CEO Eric Schultz.

Carson is an Air Force veteran. He has studied at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and the University of Maryland, and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Phoenix.

ProEx Names St. Onge Physical Therapist

SPRINGFIELD — ProEx, a physical-therapist-owned private practice specializing in orthopedics, spine, and sports medicine, announced that Roger St. Onge has been named a staff physical therapist in the Springfield location.

St. Onge joined ProEx in August of 2014 as an exercise technician while working toward his doctorate in physical therapy from American International College. He is also currently a strength and conditioning coach with CrossFit Iron Will and was a sergeant with the U.S. Marine Corps from 2007 to 2011, assigned at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

“It’s a pleasure to have Roger on board as a staff physical therapist,” said Colleen Calvanese, clinic manager of the Springfield location. “His knowledge, skill, and dedication meshes perfectly with our people-focused organization.”

Berkshire Health Systems Welcomes Five Physicians

PITTSFIELD — Berkshire Health Systems announced the appointments of five primary-care physicians, all accepting new patients throughout the Berkshires. Dr. Judith Aldrich and Dr. Brynn Hancock have joined Berkshire Osteopathic Health of BMC, which has offices in Adams and Pittsfield. Dr. Maxim Bitunov is now providing care at Hillcrest Family Health Center of BMC in Pittsfield, and Dr. Terra Lampiasi is at Lenox Family Health Center of BMC. Dr. John Paul Hickey is with Barrington Family Medicine in Great Barrington. The addition of these five physicians is a significant expansion of primary-care services in the Berkshires and Southern Vermont, which has been experiencing the national shortage of primary-care physicians.

Aldrich specializes in family-practice medicine and osteopathic manipulative medicine and is board-certified in both specialties. She received her medical degree from the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine in Maine and completed her residency in family medicine at Brighton Medical Center in Maine.

Hancock is also board-certified in family medicine and osteopathic manipulative medicine and received her medical degree from Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine. She is fellowship-trained in osteopathic manipulative medicine at Berkshire Medical Center and completed her residency in family medicine at Eastern Maine Medical Center.

Bitunov received his medical degree from Vitebsk State Medical University, Belarus, and completed his residency in internal medicine at Berkshire Medical Center.

Lampiasi received her medical degree from Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, and completed her residency in internal medicine at Berkshire Medical Center.

Hickey is board-certified in internal medicine and certified by the American Academy of HIV as an expert. He received his medical degree from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and completed his residency at St. Vincent’s Hospital and Medical Center in New York.

CSO Honors Employees at Appreciation Event

NORTHAMPTON — Clinical & Support Options Inc. honored seven employees for their outstanding commitment to the community at its annual Staff Appreciation and Holiday Event on Dec. 2. These awards are presented annually to recognize the exemplary contributions made by employees in the course of their work. Approximately 300 guests attended this lively event, which was held at the Log Cabin in Holyoke. The winners included:

  • Exemplary Direct Service Award: William Griffin, nurse manager, Gardner;
  • Outstanding Commitment to Recovery Award: Debby Lincoln, peer recovery advocate, Greenfield;
  • Exemplary Administrative Support Award: Greg Sullivan, helpdesk supervisor, Northampton administration;
  • Outstanding Leadership Award: Amber Gahn, MCI Supervisor, Northampton Emergency Services;
  • Agency Morale/Spirit Award: Mary Perkins, outpatient clinician, Springfield;
  • Community Service Leadership Award: Kristal Cleaver, director, Family Resource Center, Amherst; and
  • Exemplary Team Award: Center for Community Resilience After Trauma (Kelly Broadway, Laurel Carangelo, Shannon Gamble, Peter Martyn, and Suzy Polucci).

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