Indian River County Hospital District

Chairman’s Meeting: March 15, 2023

Indian River County Hospital District Conference Room/ Zoom
March 15, 2023

TRUSTEES: Marybeth Cunningham Barb Bodnar
Michael Kint Paul Westcott
William Cooney, M.D.

ABSENT: Karen Deigl Kerry Bartlett

ZOOM: Anne Posey Carole Finck
William Wims Chriss Papyannis
Pat Knipper Jad Shalhoub

STAFF: Dawn Carboni Jennifer Peshke, Esq.
Kate Voss Jennifer Frederick
Ann Marie Suriano

ATTENDEES: Wes Sammons Lisa Kahle
Ann Marie McCrystal Carol Kanarek
Jeff Pickering Chiaka Nwosu
Ellen Wayne Renee Bireley
Bill Stengel Cecelia Stalnaker

Convene Meeting – Marybeth Cunningham, Chairwoman

Mrs. Cunningham convened the meeting of the IRCHD Board of Trustees at 10:00 AM by welcoming those participating via Zoom and in person. Ms. Cunningham introduced Lisa Kahle, Chairman of the Mental Health Collaborative and Wes Sammons who was just hired as the new Executive Director for the Mental Health Collaborative. She then provided an update concerning the Mental Health Court and stated that the task force held their first meeting and Kerry Bartlett attended as a representative for the District. Ms. Bartlett also prepared a memo which was included in todays meeting materials for the Trustees to review. She then offered an opportunity for the Trustees to ask any questions concerning the Mental Health Court for Ms. Kahle to address. There were none and it was discussed that the next task force meeting would take place on the 24th of March.

Mr. Westcott asked if it would be appropriate for an assessment to be created reflective of the mental health treatment community, to gain a better understanding of the drivers and the need for care within Indian River County. The exercise could better assist the District and other local government entities to better shape public policy and funding support. Ms. Cunningham indicated that much of this data is available through Indian River Indicators, but further exploration into this matter is appropriate and could be supported through efforts of the Mental Health Collaborative. Ms. Kahle stated that she would bring this matter before the board at their next meeting in April. Ms. Suriano stated it could also be discussed at the next Executive Committee meeting for the Collaborative as well.

Indian River Indicators Health Update- Jeff Pickering, CEO Indian River Community Foundation

Mr. Pickering addressed the board and provided some background information concerning the Community Foundation. He stated that the Indian River Community Foundation was established in 2008 and is accredited as meeting National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations. A core strategic priority is growing, stewarding, and deploying philanthropic capital to improve the community. Currently the Community Foundation holds more than $90 million in over 200 charitable giving accounts and have awarded more than $100 million in grants to charities in Indian River County (“IRC”) and worldwide. He began his presentation by reviewing the Nonprofit sector of Indian River County and stated that out of 944 nonprofits, 832 are 501(C)3 charities, and 175 have revenue of $50,000 or more. Additionally, he explained that nonprofit health institutions only make up 15% of charities in IRC but bring in the highest aggregate revenue of $154 million. Next, he provided a review of the Community Needs Assessment which took place over a 12-month period and utilized an independent research consultant. The domains in which they reviewed include health, education, economic opportunity, and housing. Some of the key insights from the report included identifying that there is an aging, diversifying population and an increasing wealth disparity. He also noted that philanthropic and charity dollars do help support the community, but public dollars are essential in supporting substantial change. He then reviewed trends in county demographics, mortality which including COVID-19 deaths, risky behaviors, and mental health. He also reviewed data and trends concerning access to healthcare which showed an increase of individuals obtaining health insurance but decreased provider to patient ratios for primary care services. He also reviewed trends for children and health and discussed the increase in infant mortality rates. However, the trend for the long-term infant mortality rate continues to decline. Lastly, he reviewed information from a case study that was conducted and ultimately led to the creation for the Mental Health Intensive Outpatient Program now operated by CCIRH. He also reviewed the capacity of IRC system of care concerning mental health which showed adequate, insufficient, or no capacity in areas relative to mental health treatment and care. One area with no capacity was the need for residential and supportive housing services which is in line with the current housing crisis within the community. He also reviewed data from a second case study concerning disparities in life expectancy throughout IRC. In closing he shared practical ways to communicate the results of the information shared today and discussed the future collaborative efforts with the District.

Deep Blue Introduction & Review of Investment Portfolio –Dominick Cristofaro, Director of Client Advisory Services

Mr. Cristofaro addressed the board and began his presentation by providing a brief introduction of Deep Blue, and its history. He stated that they have over 22 years of experience managing public funds in Florida and were selected as the investment manager to the Florida Fixed Income Trust in 2010 and the U. S. Fixed Income Trust in 2019. He then provided a review of the services offered by Deep Blue, specifically the Florida Fixed Income Trust, which is where the District funds are invested. He explained that it is a low volatility and yields a 4.52% interest rate. He then reviewed the different options for institutional cash tiers and discussed the FL-FIT preferred deposit pool which is what the District utilizes. He then provided a review of the Districts portfolio as of February 28, 2023. The total market value accrued is just over 8.8 million and 97% of those funds are invested in secure government bonds. He further explained that the investments yielded just over $30,000 in interest for the month of February. Lastly, he provided a breakdown of the maturity schedule and holdings.

Samaritan Center Request for Funding – Ellen Wayne, CEO Catholic Charities & Renee Bireley, Executive Director of Samaritan Center

Ms. Wayne began her presentation by providing a review of the Catholic Charities Diocese of Palm Beach and their support to the Treasure Coast and Palm Beach County. Then she discussed Samaritan Center and stated that the center is transitional housing for homeless families in Indian River County and supports around 50 individuals a year. Their goal is to help the residents develop economic stability, mental health stability and community involvement. The center is able to support up to 9 families and following the completion of their stay, 90% of families remain in permanent housing. Next, she reviewed data concerning homelessness on the Treasure Coast and stated that there has been a 4% increase since 2021. Many of the residents have high levels of complex trauma and mental health needs complicating their homelessness and journey toward self-sufficiency. To combat this, the center currently supports the services of a part time therapist who works as an independent contractor. However, given the increased need for mental health support for their residents, they are looking to hire a full-time employee to fill the position. Therefore, before the Trustee is a funding request $28,682.07 to support the hiring salary of a full time licensed mental health counselor to serve residents in house and assist with after hour crisis support. She provided a breakdown of the budget for the request and stated that this would support the position from May-September 2023. Additionally, they will also be completing a new funding request for FY 23-24 and will submit the same for consideration during the next funding cycle. There was Trustee discussion and they asked for clarification concerning the financial support the Diocese of Palm Beach provides. It was explained that they do receive funding from the Diocese but those funds are allocated to multiple areas and are unable to support the hiring of a full time position. After further discussion Ms. Cunningham made a motion to approve the request, which was seconded by Dr. Cooney. The motion carried unanimously.

Other Business

Ms. Cunningham stated that included in the meeting materials was correspondence from CCIRH concerning the 82nd Ave property and their future use of the property. Due to their response of not wanting to relase the property to the District, Ms. Peshke has been instructed to contact their representatives and request that they come before the board to discuss the same at an upcoming Chairman’s meeting.

Public Comment & Adjourn- There was no public comment and meeting was adjourned at 12:00 PM



William P Cooney MD is an orthopedic surgeon (retired) who has been a resident of Vero Beach since 2004. He practiced orthopedic surgery at Indian River Medical Center from 2006-2015 within the orthopedic practice of Prosports. He served on the IRMC Foundation for four years. Prior to this, he was a Professor of Orthopedics at Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota, Chair of the Division of Hand Surgery and Vice president of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. He served as the Vice Chairman of the Mayo Clinic Development Department. He has been President of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand, Orthopedic Research and Education Foundation, Consultant at Shrine Hospital systems. He was editor in chief of the Journal of Orthopedic Surgery and co-editor of the Journal of Hand Surgery. He held grants in hand and wrist surgery sponsored by National Institute of Health (NIH) and Stryker Orthopedics and has over 250 publications in the field of orthopedic surgery, hand, wrist and elbow surgery and microsurgery- free tissue transfers. Within Indian River County, he has served as Chairman of the Board and President of the Hope for Families Homeless Center, Board of the Indian River Hospital Foundation, We Care and Whole Family Health Center medical practices.

Term:  1/23-12/24

Origination: Elected (2 OC)

Occupation: Retired Surgeon



Kerry Bartlett,  of Vero Beach, has more than 30 years experience in philanthropy, including as vice president of the VNA & Hospice Foundation; VNA chief advancement officer from 2001-2007; and executive director of the Indian River Community Foundation from 2008-2014. Kerry is the founder of The Bartlett Company, which focuses on nonprofit and philanthropic consulting. She also is a managing director for Carter, a Vero Beach company that specializes in advancing philanthropy worldwide. Kerry has spent more than 25 years in the nonprofit sector as a fund development professional and has particular expertise in annual funds, major gifts, endowment campaigns and legacy giving. Kerry is also known for creating and implementing effective donor-centered stewardship programs that build, maintain and strengthen nonprofits’ relationships.

Term:  3/21-12/22   |   1/23-12/26

Origination: Appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis
Elected NOC

Occupation: Philanthropic Consultant/Managing Director



Karen has been President and CEO of Senior Resource Association, where she successfully advocates for older adults and their families, since 2006. In that role, she helps provide activities, education and services benefiting older and disabled adults in Indian River County. In addition, Karen provides oversight of the community mass transit system for residents and visitors of the county. As CEO, Karen is responsible for a $7 million operational annual budget and managing more than 100 employees. She ensures that fiscally sound and responsible solutions are created to provide healthcare and a better quality of life for all Indian River County residents. Karen earned a BS in Health Administration from Florida Atlantic University and an MHA from the University of Florida. She was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2016, and joined the Board in January 2017.

Term:  1/17-12/20   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected NOC

Occupation: President/CEO



Paul Westcott has been a Board Certified Workers' Compensation Attorney since 1999. In addition, Paul has earned his certification from the Florida Supreme Court as a Circuit Civil and Family Law Mediator. Receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree in both Economics and Political Science at Florida Southern College, he continued his education at Stetson University College of Law. He graduated from Stetson in 1988, having been a published member of the Stetson Law Review. Paul has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1988.  He began his practice in a combined civil litigation and transactional practice before serving as an Assistant State Attorney.  He began his career in Workers' Compensation with Rissman, Weisberg, Barrett, Hurt, Donahue & McClain P.A., where he handled Workers' Compensation cases at the trial and appellate levels.  In 1997, Paul opened the Ft. Pierce office of Hurley, Rogner, Miller, Cox, Waranch & Westcott P.A. handling workers' compensation cases at all levels throughout central and south Florida, while managing the operations of that office.  During his nearly 25 year career in Workers' Compensation, he lectured on a wide range of industry topics.

1/23-12/26   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC 

Occupation: Attorney & Mediator



Barbara has practiced physical therapy, specializing in orthopedics and sports medicine, in her hometown of Vero Beach since 1981. She was an integral part of the sports medicine team at Vero Beach High School for 35 years. Barbara completed the reserve police academy training, and served with the Vero Beach Police Department from 1982-1989. Her volunteer involvement in the community includes serving on the City of Vero Beach Recreation Committee, Arthritis Association of Indian River County, and the Senior Good Life Games. She and her husband, Michael, enjoy spending their free time traveling in their RV and training their Labradors, Gunner and Chase, in K-9 performance events, including agility and dock jumping. Barbara is a lifelong resident of Indian River County, and received her degree in physical therapy from Chattanooga State College. Barbara was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2016, and joined the Board in January 2017.

Term:  1/17-12/20   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected 1 OC

Occupation: Physical Therapist



Born and raised in Illinois, Michael was a Theatre and Speech Instructor at Lincoln College when he moved to Indian River County in 1984. He was the Director of Education for the Riverside Theatre for a decade, helping to build the Riverside Children’s Theatre and directing many productions. Michael is well known in the community for his 25 years of service at the United Way of Indian River County, 16 of those years as the CEO. He is very proud of his work with dozens of nonprofit agencies and his commitment to creating and strengthening community collaboratives. Michael was also an Adjunct Faculty member at Barry University for 20 years. He has served on many boards and committees over the years, including: Children’s Services Advisory Committee Needs Assessment, Chair of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program for many years, and he was a founding member of the Mental Health Collaborative, the Senior Collaborative of IRC and the IRC Executive Roundtable. As a Hospital District Trustee he is committed to serving all the citizens of our county. In particular, he hopes to see enhanced availability and affordability for behavioral/mental health for all in need.


Term: 1/23- 12/26

Origination: Elected 1 OC

Occupation: Retired CEO United Way



Marybeth’s professional career encompasses 34 years of working for GM/Delphi in a variety of positions. Starting out as a traffic claims clerk, she worked her way through the organization, with roles in Purchasing, Engineering, and Quality and Reliability. She retired in 2009 as the executive director of Global Operations for the Packard Electric Division of Delphi. In this position, she was responsible for 94 plants in 33 countries. Marybeth has served on the board of directors for numerous non-profits, including Northeast Ohio Adoption Agency; United Way of Warren Ohio, where she served as chairman of the annual campaign for two years; Up with People; Head, Heart and Hands of Indian River Club; Indian River Community Foundation, and the Indian River Mental Health Collaborative. She earned her B.A. in Political Science from Albion College. Marybeth was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2014, and joined the Board in January 2015. She currently serves as Chair.


Term:  1/15-12/18   |   1/19-12/22   |   1/23- 12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected  NOC | Elected NOC

Occupation: Retired Executive GM