Leavitt Family Jewish Home Welcomes Girhiny
LONGMEADOW — JGS Lifecare’s nursing home, the Leavitt Family Jewish Home, welcomes Alexis Girhiny as dining services director, responsible for overseeing dining services at the home and at Ruth’s House Assisted Living Residence. As an experienced culinary instructor and executive chef, her culinary achievements bring a new dimension to JGS Lifecare’s kosher dining and banquet menus.
Girhiny brings 25 years of culinary experience to the JGS Lifecare campus. Formally trained at the Culinary Institute of America, she has spent much of her career training and developing culinary career staff. Most recently, Girhiny worked as a chef instructor for the Louisiana Culinary Institute in Baton Rouge, La. There, she provided hands-on training in culinary technique, preparation, and presentation. She also served as director of career services at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Boston, one of 30 Le Cordon Bleu schools worldwide.
“We’re proud to welcome Alexis to direct our dining services. She not only brings tremendous talent, enthusiasm, and experience to our culinary team, she also brings the prestigious Le Cordon Bleu brand name to our JGS Lifecare campus,” said Anne Thomas, vice president of residential health, JGS Lifecare. “She has a real passion for food that she can’t wait to share with our residents.”
Added Girhiny, “I love to cook, and I want to elevate the food we serve for our residents.”
In addition to culinary education, Girhiny brings executive chef and management experience locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally, including her own restaurant, AGB Corp, that was located on State Street in Springfield. She is ACF (American Culinary Federation) certified as an executive chef and also Serve Safe certified as an instructor proctor.
The Leavitt Family Jewish Home maintains a kosher food-service department. Fresh, nutritional meals and snacks follow current applicable federal, state, and local standards, guidelines, and regulations and are in accordance with Orthodox Jewish dietary laws. For more information about JGS Lifecare, visit jgslifecare.org.
Patient-Centered Physician Award Given to Alsmaan
PITTSFIELD — Dr. Hafez Alsmaan, a pulmonary and critical-care specialist at Berkshire Medical Center (BMC), has been recognized with the 2016 Patient-Centered Physician Award, presented annually to a physician who exemplifies the philosophy of patient-centered care at BMC.
“Dr. Alsmaan has brought a powerful spirit to the hospital, and his heart and soul belong to his patients, their families, and his colleagues at BMC,” said Diane Kelly, chief operating officer. “He is the kind of physician who leaves a lasting mark on all who are in his care. It is his life’s work, his passion, and his vocation. A patient never forgets a physician who demonstrates respect and who answers their questions thoroughly and honestly, who soothes their fears and anxieties, who offers both physician comfort and emotional support. Dr. Alsmaan is such a physician, and we are proud he is part of Berkshire Medical Center.”
The staff of BMC submitted nominations for the award. They chose to honor Alsmaan based on his actions as a role model and physician leader who demonstrates caring through quality interactions with others. The award focuses on communicating with patients and families, involving patients in healthcare decisions, taking the time to talk with patients and listen to their concerns, and working collaboratively and respectfully with other members of the care team so that everyone can do their best in addressing patient-care issues. These behaviors exemplify a growing philosophical belief that all care activities must be centered around the patients’ needs, rather than hospital or individual routines and schedules.
The Patient-Centered Physician Award is presented each year in conjunction with National Doctors Day. Previous recipients of the award are Drs. Robert Wespiser, Richard Perera, Todd Lasner, Ronald Hayden, Paula Aucoin, Andrew Beckwith, Wade Gebara, Rocco Iannucci, Marcella Bradway, William DeMarco, Michael McHugh, and Michael DeLeo.
Cancer House of Hope Taps Kane as Program Director
WEST SPRINGFIELD — The Center for Human Development (CHD) has named Joe Kane program director for the Cancer House of Hope in West Springfield, one of 70 CHD programs.
CHD’s Cancer House of Hope provides a variety of essential, accessible services and supports for individuals with cancer and their families, completely free of charge. The primary focus is on reducing stress and promoting comfort for people with cancer and their families and friends by offering programs and services in a non-institutional and home-like setting. Volunteers and professionals are familiar with effects of cancer on a personal basis and offer understanding, encouragement, and hope.
Prior to assuming the role of program director, Kane accumulated more than 20 years of experience in corporate communications, marketing, and community relations. He also has been involved in the Western Mass. community through volunteer work and business-outreach activities. Kane is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester and earned his MBA at Anna Maria College, also in Worcester.
“Joe brings a tremendous amount of experience and expertise,” said Kimberly Lee, vice president of the CDH Office of Advancement. “We are very excited about his ideas for enhancing the programming at the Cancer House of Hope.”
Dunkerley Honored as Top Community Clinician
GREENFIELD — Baystate Franklin Medical Center physician Dr. Michael Dunkerley has been honored by his physician peers of the Franklin District Medical Society as the district society’s 2016 Community Clinician of the Year, an honor recognizing his professionalism and contributions as a physician.
The Community Clinician of the Year Award was established in 1998 by the Mass. Medical Society to recognize a physician from each of the society’s 20 district medical societies who has made significant contributions to his or her patients and the community.
Board-certified in emergency medicine, Dunkerley has been an emergency physician at Baystate Franklin Medical Center since 2006. He earned his bachelor’s degree in biophysics, magna cum laude, from the State University of New York at Geneseo, and received his medical degree from the School of Medicine at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He completed his internship in internal medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York and his residency in emergency medicine at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield.
He is a fellow of the American College of Emergency Medicine and a diplomate of the American Board of Emergency Medicine. From 2013 to 2015, he served as the school physician for the Hilltown Cooperative Charter Public School in Easthampton.
The Community Clinician of the Year Award is the latest honor accorded to Dunkerley. He has previously received the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation Award and the Medical Staff Leadership Award from Baystate Franklin Medical Center. He is also a member of the National Medical Honor Society, Alpha Omega Alpha.