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Center for Healthcare Organization & Implementation Research

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Expert & Shareholder Council

Jeroan Allison, MD, MS (Chair) is Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, where he also serves as Associate Vice Provost for Health Disparities Research. His research focuses on implementation science with an emphasis on eliminating racial/ethnic disparities.

Richard Barbato, BS, MSW,
was appointed as Director of Veterans Services for the City of Gloucester in August of 2012, after serving for the United States Army where he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant, and assigned to the 3rd Battalion of the 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 82nd Air-borne Division, Fort Bragg, NC. In February of 2003, he deployed to Kuwait, and subsequently saw combat during the invasion / liberation of Iraq in March. Having served as the Outreach Specialist for the Lowell Vet Center in January of 2014, Barbato went on in August of 2017 to 10RCS in VA central office for the Readjustment Counceling Service until 2018 where he accepted the position of Management & Program Analyst, his current role, in the Office of Planning and Policy, Readjustment Counseling Service.

Jessica Blue-Howells, MSW, 
serves as Deputy National Director, Veterans Justice Programs (VJP). She oversees the Health Care for Reentry Veterans Program, VA's national prison outreach effort, which has worked with over 88,000 Veterans in approximately 1,000 U.S. State and Federal prisons. Jessica also served as a co-investigator and operational partner on studies focused on homeless Veterans. She currently serves as a member of two advisory boards, the VHA Domestic Violence Task Force, and Department of Justice National Institute of Corrections Justice Involved Veteran Network authorized in 2014.

John Bradley, MD,
serves as the Chief of Psychiatry and Deputy Director for Mental Health for the VA Boston Healthcare System. Dr. Bradley joined VA in 2011, after retiring from active duty in the United States Army where he served as Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Vice Chair at Uniformed Services University.

Michael Charness, MD,
is Professor of Neurology and Faculty Associate Dean at Harvard Medical School and Professor of Neurology and Associate Dean at Boston University School of Medicine. He was chief of Neurology at the VA Boston Healthcare System from 1996 until 2003. Since 2003, he has served as Chief of Staff at the VA Boston Healthcare System, where he is responsible for clinical care, education, and research.

Joan Clifford, DNP,
was appointed Director of the Bedford VA Healthcare System on March 18, 2018. Prior to this, she served as the Deputy Assistant Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Access to Care for the Veterans Health Administration (October 2016 - December 2016). She was detailed to VA Central Office as the Acting Deputy Chief Nursing Officer from May 2016 through September 2016.

Anthony Hollenberg, MD, Medicine, is the John Wade Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine at Boston University Chobanian and Avedisian School of Medicine and physician-in-chief at Boston Medical Center. Prior to this role, he served as Chair of the Joan and Sanford I. Weill Department of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine and Physician-in-Chief at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York City.

Francesca (Fran) Cunningham, PharmD is Associate Chief Consultant, Medication Safety in the Department of Veterans Affairs Pharmacy Benefits Management Services (PBM) and the Director of the VA Center for Medication Safety (VAMedSAFE). Her focus has been on assessing new agents where safety data is lacking and older drugs when a newly emerging danger requires evaluation.

Neil C. Evans, MD,
is the Chief Officer for the Office of Connected Care in the Veterans Health Administration, as well as a board-certified, practicing primary care internist at the Washington, D.C. VA Medical Center. He holds faculty appointments in Medicine at George Washington University and Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.

Michael G. Goldstein, MD,
is the Associate Chief Consultant for Preventive Medicine for the VHA National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (NCP). Dr. Goldstein is an Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Dr. Goldstein was formerly Chief of the Mental Health and Behavioral Sciences Service at the Providence VA Medical Center and an Investigator at the Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine (CBPM) at The Miriam Hospital.

Benjamin Kligler, MD, MPH,
is National Director of the Integrative Health Coordinating Center at the Veterans Health Administration and former Vice Chair of the Department of Integrative Medicine, Mount Sinai Beth Israel. He is a Professor of Family and Community Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Herimone L. Chappell, MD has more than 30 years of experience in medicine and clinical operations with an emphasis on healthcare policy and management. She began her career a civilian ED Physician for the Department of the Army in Landstuhl, Germany. While in Europe, she was selected as the Chief of Medicine for N.A.T.O. Health Clinics, Brussels, Belgium. Her VA career began as a staff primary care physician at the Dayton VAMC, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Wright State University, Adjunct professor of Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic and Medicine Preceptor for the Ohio State University School of Dentistry. She has since held numerous leadership positions across various VA systems. 

Vincent W. Ng, MBA, was appointed to the position of Acting Medical Center Director of VA Boston Healthcare System on May 13, 2013 and officially appointed as Director on September 8, 2013. An accomplished health care executive, Mr. Ng has a long history of serving Veterans in the Department of Veterans Affairs. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a graduate of Leadership VA, and has served on many VHA boards, committees, and special task forces.

Laura A. Petersen, MD, MPH, FACP,
is a Board certified internist, a Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Section of Health Services Research at Baylor College of Medicine. She is the Director of the Houston Center for Innovations in Quality, Effectiveness, and Safety (IQuESt) one of the nation's 19 competitively funded VA Health Services Research and Development Centers of Innovation, and Associate Chief of Staff for Research and Development for the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center.

Latha Sivaprasad, MD, FACP, FHM,
is the Regional Chief Medical Officer of the VA for the New England Health Care System (VISN 1). Dr. Sivaprasad is a physician executive with expertise in safety, quality, and streamlining health care delivery to achieve cost containment, evidence-based/patient-centered care, and a culture of well-being and focus. She has over 15 years of clinical experience in multiple, large hospital settings with an emphasis on physician training, mentoring, and leadership development.

Kendra Weaver, PsyD,
serves as the Senior Consultant for Clinical Operations in the Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention (OMHSP), Department of Veterans Affairs Central Office (VACO). In this role, she provides consultation, guidance, and leadership for multiple, systems-focused, national initiatives, including team-based care, behavioral health leadership training, and telemental health. In her 20+ years with VA, Dr. Weaver has served in several clinical and administrative leadership positions at the facility, Veterans Integrated Service Network, and VACO levels.

CHOIR Executive Leadership Team

Dr Bokhour Barbara G. Bokhour, PhD, is the Director of VA Bedford CHOIR. 
Dr Gifford
Allen L. Gifford, MD,
is the Director of VA Boston CHOIR.
Sarah Cutrona

Sarah L. Cutrona, MD, MPH, is the Associate Director for VA Bedford CHOIR. 

Dr Wiener

Renda S. Wiener, MD, 
is the Associate Director for VA Boston CHOIR.