Indian River County Hospital District

Chairman’s Meeting Minutes: July 15, 2020



Indian River County Hospital District

July 15, 2020

10:00 AM

TRUSTEES:                             Marybeth Cunningham             Michael Weiss

Ann Marie McCrystal               Barbara Bodnar

Allen Jones                              Tracey Zudans


ABSENT:                                 Karen Deigl


STAFF:                                     Ann Marie Suriano                   Jennifer Frederick

Kate Voss                                    Jennifer Peshke, Esq.


Convene Meeting – Marybeth Cunningham, Chairwoman

Mrs. Cunningham convened the Chairman’s meeting of the IRCHD Board of Trustees at 10:00 AM by welcoming those participating via Zoom. She stated that the District is allowed to conduct meetings remotely, as outlined in Governor DeSantis’ Executive Order 20-69.


            VNA Expansion- Patricia Knipper, Director, Strategic Alliances/Special Projects

Ms. Knipper explained that she is seeking approval from the District Trustees for use of the District owned parcel of land north of the Hospice House. She provided a brief history of the VNA and reviewed the growth the organization has seen over the last 45 years. The VNA currently houses its staff in the Human Services Building, but it has now outgrown that space. Their goals are to consolidate VNA operations to enhance delivery of patient care, develop a medical education and training facility with an advanced technology platform, and engage the District and collaborative partners to achieve these goals. She further reviewed the projected timeline for this project which would initiate a capital fundraising campaign at the beginning of 2021, with ground breaking to take place later in the year. They would hope to have the project completed between 2023-2024. There was Trustee discussion and they unanimously agreed to support the concept. Ms. Zudans recommended that as a part of this effort, the VNA work to purchase or obtain the District owned land in which they would be building the new facilities. There was further discussion as to the future of the Human Services building once the VNA vacates the same, and if Cleveland Clinic could utilize the building for their operations.


Community Needs Assessment Results- Jeff Pickering, CEO Community Foundation

Mr. Pickering provided a historical review of the Community Foundation and its operations. He explained that the Foundation is a nonprofit enterprise with a mission of building a better community through donor-driven philanthropy. Their business is philanthropy, and the main products are the charitable giving accounts established by their clients. With assets of $70 million in 175 charitable giving accounts, the Community Foundation and its clients have awarded more than $66 million in grants, mostly to nonprofit charitable organizations located in Indian River County.

Mr. Pickering explained that for the first time in a decade, major funding organizations, donor groups, county government and community leaders came together to assess the needs of Indian River County residents on a comprehensive basis. Over 50 agencies participated in the effort and residents from across the county explained directly what their needs were by filling out written surveys and speaking up at focus groups. He reviewed with the Trustees some of the key findings from the report, which included an aging and diversifying population. There is also an increasing wealth disparity with Indian River County having the 10th largest income gap between the top 1 percent and the bottom 99% of earners. He then reviewed some positive outcomes that the county has achieved over the last 3-5 years. Those include a decrease in infant mortality and community collaborative efforts such as the Moonshot Moment and Kindergarten Readiness. There has also been an increased access to mental health and substance abuse recovery services. He further reviewed some persistent problems that were identified within the county. These include families unable to secure meaningful employment with a living wage, lack of affordable medical and dental care, and isolated senior citizens living alone.  Lastly, he discussed the fact that Indian River County is fortunate to have a generous philanthropic community who provides their volunteer time and financial support. However, without the help of pubic dollars, the quality of life in the county would be compromised. He believes that more public funds will be required to give those most vulnerable individuals a chance at scaling up.


Other Business-

Mrs. Suriano stated that she has received notifications from Healthy Start and We Care, indicating their desire to continue their subleases with TCCH at the Gifford Health Center. TCCH has accepted both subleases for renewal. There was further discussion surrounding the proposed development of a pharmacy at the Gifford Health Center and where that may be located within the center. Additionally, there was discussion surrounding the ophthalmology room within the We Care sublease which isn’t currently being utilized. Ms. Soule indicated that she intends to work with We Care and Healthy Start regarding this matter to come to a resolution which would be agreeable to all parties, while serving the needs of the patients who utilize the clinic. Ms. Zudans recommended converting the GHC conference room, which is rarely utilized, into the TCCH pharmacy or Healthy Start offices.

Mrs. Suriano stated that she received a funding request from Whole Family Health center in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ms. Andress indicated in her request that the recent surge in positive cases has added a greater level of financial burden to the organization, in an already tough situation. Ms. Andress prepared a spreadsheet listing the items that were needed immediately and additional items needed, with unit costs and a description of usage. She explained that many of the items are telehealth related, testing kits and supplies, PPE and home health supplies. The total amount of the request is $216,212.61. Mrs. Suriano asked for Trustee comment and discussion relative to the request. Mr. Jones explained that since the request was submitted late Tuesday afternoon, he had not had time to review the same. Other Trustees agreed. Therefore, Mrs. Suriano was instructed to add this item to the regular monthly meeting agenda for tomorrows meeting, to allow the Trustees more time to review the request.

Mrs. Cunningham addressed the Trustees and expressed her frustration in the County Commissioners rejection of the Indian River county mask mandate. She shared some statistics relative to the benefits of wearing masks to stop the spread of COVID-19. She also shared information she received from Dr. Rosencrance and the increased admissions of COVID-19 patients at the hospital. She encouraged all Trustees and members of the pubic to wear masks while in public and to practice social distancing, to help combat the spread of COVID-19.


Public Comment-

Ms. Soule thanked the Trustees for their dedication and efforts to help the community during this stressful time. She is grateful to have the support of the District and their support is invaluable.


            Adjourn- The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 AM




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