Children’s National Medical Center Names New Board Members January 31, 2011

Washington, DC — Children’s National Medical Center has several new officers and members of its governing boards. Children’s National Medical Center includes several corporate entities, each with a distinct focus and each with its own board. A recent addition to the roster is Children’s National Advocacy & Public Policy, Incorporated, an entity focused on defining and overseeing Children’s advocacy agenda.

“We are pleased to formally announce the creation of a new advocacy and policy corporate entity,” said Edwin K. Zechman, Jr., president and CEO of Children’s National. “As the nation’s children’s hospital, we play an important role in serving as the voice for all children across the region and around the world. This recently created corporate entity is charged with defining and overseeing this important body of work. We also welcome new members to many of our existing boards, and applaud those who continue to serve, some of them in new roles. We greatly appreciate the hard work these generous community members offer to Children’s National and our affiliates.”

New members of Children’s National boards and those with new roles, began their service with the new year, 2011. They include:

Children's Hospital

  • Kathy Barker became president of the Child Health Center Board, one of several auxiliary entities of Children’s National, in June 2010. The Child Health Center Board’s mission is “to keep the well child well.” Its president serves ex officio as a member of the Children’s Hospital Board of Directors.
  • Debra Friedman has served on the Children’s Hospital Board for four years, and now serves in a new capacity as vice chairman.
  • Robert Keating, MD, chief of Neurosurgery, Children’s National, became president of Children’s National Medical Staff in June 2010, and in that capacity serves ex officio as a member of the Children’s Hospital Board.
  • Carolyn Thornell has served on the Hospital Board for six years, and now serves in a new capacity as chairman-elect.
  • Kathie Williams became president of the Board of Visitors of Children’s National Medical Center, another of the several auxiliary entities of Children’s National, in June 2010. The Board of Visitors president serves ex officio as a member of the Children’s Hospital Board of Directors.
Children’s Hospital Foundation
  • Colleen Avis comes to the Foundation Board with experience as a management consultant with MarketBridge and KPMG. She also currently serves on the Board of Visitors and is the chair of Heroes Against Childhood Cancer.
  • Betty Ewing, a social worker, served at Children’s until 2000 in the Emergency Room, and with the Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Orthopaedics teams. She joined the Board of Visitors of Children’s National in 1974. She also served on the Children’s Hospital Foundation Board 2002-2009. Her other affiliations include service as past president and board member of Children’s Hospital International, former board member of The Lab School of Washington, and former board member of The Washington Home.
  • Norma Lee Funger is a real estate professional and has served in many capacities with Children’s National, beginning in 1988 as a member of the Corporate Board and as a Children’s Hospital Foundation Board member 1991-1998 and 2002-2009. In addition to her community work with Children’s National, she has been involved in numerous educational and cultural institutions, including the Washington, DC, Ronald McDonald House; the Washington Performing Arts Society; the Smithsonian American Art Museum; the National Gallery of Art; the Kennedy Center; and the National Symphony Orchestra.
  • Mae Grennan is new to the Hospital Foundation Board. She is an attorney with the Franklin L. Haney Company, and President of the Haney Foundation, a family foundation which partners with the Washington, DC, government to support the DC Public Education Fund. She participates in a number of local organizations and serves on the Development Committee for the River School and St. Patrick's Day School. She is a trustee of the Washington National Opera and the Maddux Foundation.
Children’s Research Institute (CRI) Board
  • Kevin Fickenscher, MD, CPE, FACPE, FAAFP, is new to the CRI Board. He is a chief strategy and development officer for Dell Healthcare Services. Dell is ranked as the leading provider of information and technology services for the healthcare industry in the world. Prior to his current position with Dell, Dr. Fickenscher served as the vice president for International Healthcare and the Chief Medical Officer for Perot Systems, which was acquired by Dell in November 2009.
  • Mary Alice O’Malley, RN, previously served on the Children’s Research Institute Board 2004-2006. She has a degree in nursing, and serves in a voluntary capacity with many organizations, including St. Vincent’s School of Nursing where she is a member of the Board of Trustees, a member of the Mission Committee, and Co-Chairman of St. Vincent’s Capital Campaign. Ms. O’Malley volunteers at Greenwich Hospital’s Hospice program and is a long-time volunteer at Call-a-Ride. She has served on the board of Hill House as well as the Parish Council of St. Catherine’s of Siena, where she has been a eucharistic minister for over 20 years. Ms. O’Malley is currently serving on the Board of Villia Maria Educational Center.
  • Jay Schnitzer, MD, PhD, joined the CRI Board last year, and brings extensive experience to Children’s National as the chief medical officer and senior vice president of Boston Scientific. His career includes a 15-year joint appointment at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the Shriners Burns Hospital, Boston. His medical credentials include board certification in general and pediatric surgery. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (FAAP). At Boston Scientific Corporation, Dr. Schnitzer is responsible for clinical and medical oversight of four of the company’s divisions: Endoscopy, Urology/Gynecology, Neurovascular, and Neuromodulation.
Safe Kids Worldwide Board

Safe Kids announced its merger with the Home Safety Council (HSC) in December, 2010. This brings together two of the leading national safety organizations under one roof, with new board members including:

  • Meri-K Appy was a charter member of the Home Safety Council Board and then joined the Home Safety Council as president in 2003. She now serves on the Board of Safe Kids Worldwide. Prior to joining HSC, Ms. Appy served as vice president for Public Education at the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). In addition to her work with Safe Kids Worldwide, she serves on the Advisory Board of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for Injury Research and Policy, the National Advisory Committee of the Congressional Fire Services Institute, the Fire Safety Council, and the steering committee of the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
  • Chief Dennis Compton served as the chairman of the board of directors for the Home Safety Council, and now serves on the Safe Kids Worldwide Board. Chief Compton was the fire chief in Mesa, Arizona, for five years and assistant fire chief in Phoenix, Arizona, where he served for twenty-seven years. Chief Compton has served as chairman of the Executive Board of the International Fire Service Training Association and chairman of the Congressional Fire Services Institute’s National Advisory Committee. He is a motivational speaker and author.
  • Carmine Schiavone is the general manager of the Americans for Tyco Fire Suppression and Building Products. Mr. Schiavone is active in many trade and professional associations and coalitions, including the National Fire Protection Association, the National Fire Sprinkler Association, American Fire Sprinkler Association and the IRC Coalition, an organization that seeks to modify the International Residential Code to require the use of fire sprinklers in one- and two-family homes. In addition, he is an active participant and supporter of the Amos House of Faith, a nonprofit organization that supports the recovery of burn victims.
Children’s National Advocacy & Public Policy, Incorporated (CNAPPI)

The recently created entity, Children’s National Advocacy & Public Policy, Incorporated, oversees the advocacy agenda of Children’s National. The board of this new entity includes active leaders from the community:

  • Edwin K. Zechman, president and CEO, Children’s National Medical Center.
  • Richard W. Snowdon III, chairman, has served in many capacities with Children’s National, most recently as chairman of the Children’s National Medical Center Board. Prior to that he served as chairman of the Board of Children’s Hospital Foundation. He continues as a member of both those boards while assuming the role of chairman of the Board of CNAPPI. He is a committed advocate for children, with a longstanding interest in making healthcare more accessible to the region’s children. He has been a supporter of Children’s advocacy work, particularly as a supporter of the Child Health Advocacy Institute.
  • Cory Alexander is new to Children’s National boards. He is a senior vice president with the UnitedHealth Group, where he leads strategic partnerships and represents the organization before federal and state legislatures and the Administration. Before joining UnitedHealth, Mr. Alexander was vice president of Government and Industry Relations with Fannie Mae, and prior to that worked on Capitol Hill as chief of staff to the House Democratic Whip, Steny H. Hoyer (D-MD).
  • Jacqueline D. Bowens, executive vice president and chief government and external affairs officer, Children’s National, is a well-known leader in the region, giving voice to children and their families for more than 25 years through her work with the medical center. Ms. Bowens played an instrumental role in the formation of the Child Health Advocacy Institute, the vehicle for advocacy initiatives at Children’s National. Before joining Children’s, Ms. Bowens served on Capitol Hill in the office of Representative Louis Stokes (D-Ohio).
  • Wendy Goldberg (Secretary-Treasurer) has served in many capacities with Children’s National, most recently on the Board of Visitors of Children’s National and as a member of the Children’s Hospital Foundation Board. She has worked with the Children’s Impact DC program and on other initiatives to address high rates of asthma among children of low income families in urban areas. She has testified before the Food and Drug Administration as a parent spokesperson on the testing of pharmaceutical products in children and is a resource person on that issue for the American Academy of Pediatrics. Among her community activities, she has served on the boards of the Washington Episcopal School and St. Andrews Episcopal School.
  • Artencia Hawkins-Bell is vice president, Health and Community Services, Raytheon, where she leads business strategic planning and development activities for state and federal agencies focused on public health and social service issues. Prior to joining Raytheon, Ms. Hawkins-Bell held a variety of leadership positions at the Washington Hospital Center, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Cancer Institute.
  • Jennifer Leonard, special education strategy coordinator, Office of the DC Deputy Mayor for Education, has served on the Child Health Center Board and on the Children’s National Committee on Advocacy and Public Policy. Prior to her work with the Mayor’s office, she served as executive director of the DC Assembly on School Health Care.
  • Julissa Marenco, President of the ZGS Station Group, a Hispanic-owned broadcasting company, is new to Children’s National boards. She recently returned to ZGS after serving as a White House Fellow, a prestigious program for leadership and public service. Prior to that she was the general manager of Telemundo Washington, DC. Ms. Marenco has served on several boards including the YWCA-National Capital Area Chapter, The Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the George Mason University Diversity Advisory Board. Since 2001, she has taught at Howard University's Media Sales Institute.
  • Bonnie L. Norman, principal of a corporate real estate management consultancy, has served on the Child Health Center Board since 2004 and played a key role in that board’s founding sponsorship of Children’s National’s Child Health Advocacy Institute in 2006. Ms. Norman co-chaired the Children’s National Committee on Avocacy and Public Policy 2006-2009. Prior to her work with the real estate consultancy, she was vice president and managing broker for the real estate firm LaSalle Partners, Ltd.
  • Terry Cornwell Rumsey, principal at TRE Associates, has served in many capacities with Children’s National. In addition to her work with CNAPPI, she also serves on the Children’s National Medical Center Board. Prior to launching TRE Associates, a business management consultant firm, Ms. Cornwell Rumsey was Vice President of Education Information Services at GTECH WorldServ, a network management company. She also served in the first Clinton administration as director, Office of Science Education & Technical Information in the U.S. Department of Energy. Before joining the Clinton administration, Ms. Cornwell Rumsey spent 18 years in a variety of management positions with the Xerox Corporation. She has been a member of the Children’s Hospital Board of Directors since 2002, became its chairman in 2008, and became a member of the Children’s National Medical Center Board in 2006.
  • Kate Sara Schecter, a senior program officer with the American International Health Alliance, is new to Children’s National boards. She has managed numerous partnerships addressing primary health care, maternal/child health, hospital management and HIV/AIDS, around the world, including active work in Russia, Georgia, and Kosovo. She also has served as a World Bank Consultant, focused in healthcare and policy reform in the former Soviet Union, and prior to that served as a principal investigator with The Carnegie Corporation, focusing her work on Russian social issues.
  • Joseph Wright, MD, MPH, is senior vice president of Children’s National Child Health Advocacy Institute; professor and vice chair, Department of Pediatrics; professor of Emergency Medicine and Health Policy, The George Washington University Schools of Medicine and Public Health. He has served as attending faculty in the Division of Emergency Medicine at Children’s National since 1993, and recently served as executive director of the Center for Hospital-Based Specialties. He provides strategic leadership for the organization’s advocacy mission, public policy positions, and community partnership initiatives.

Media contacts: Paula Darte or Emily Dammeyer: 202-476-4500.


About Children’s National Health System

Children’s National Health System, based in Washington, DC, has been serving the nation’s children since 1870. Children’s National’s hospital is Magnet® designated, and is consistently ranked among the top pediatric hospitals by U.S.News & World Report. Home to the Children’s Research Institute and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children’s National is one of the nation’s top NIH-funded pediatric institutions. With a community-based pediatric network, eight regional outpatient centers, an ambulatory surgery center, two emergency rooms, an acute care hospital, and collaborations throughout the region, Children’s National is recognized for its expertise and innovation in pediatric care and as an advocate for all children. For more information, visit ChildrensNational.org, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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