Message from the Regent - Spring 2009

Colleagues and friends,

Well, spring has finally sprung and the snow has disappeared off of the lawn – at least in my neck of the woods. I never thought we would get here. Our boat made its maiden voyage for 2009 just a few days ago and it was spectacular. I imagine that this season will require more than a few rod hours before we catch the elusive King Salmon here in Southeast. This is just one of the wonderful things about living in our great state, lots to do and beautiful scenery too!

The new convocation year brings new and exciting adventures for all of us. While we are facing challenging times there are many things to be thankful for. The Alaska Healthcare Executive Network (AHEN) received another award this year as a Chapter of Distinction. Our goal for 2009 is to achieve the next level of recognition and increase our membership. It was interesting to hear other chapter leaders talk about their challenges with membership and meetings. Many of them became quiet as I explained how we have addressed the challenges that we face in regard to our geographic diversity and how we have been able to overcome some of the challenges with creative thinking and alternate avenues for meeting our member’s needs. There is always room for improvement and we encourage you to share your ideas and get involved. We have a lot to be proud of with great leadership, volunteer participation and a strong relationship with the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association.

This is my tenth year of affiliation with the ACHE and it has been the best investment that I have made personally and for my career. Some of my closest friends are people that I have met through my affiliation with ACHE and attending the Congress on Healthcare Leadership each year is a commitment that I have made to myself. I enjoy seeing people that I have met over the years and developing and maintaining relationships with colleagues across the United States and Canada. Starting as a student associate at the encouragement of a Regent in the area where I lived, I have appreciated those who served as role models along the way and encouraged my growth and participation in ACHE. I would challenge you to do the same. Find someone who can benefit from your encouragement and interest and ask them to join us. 

Upcoming Events

1) ACHE Alaska Program in Anchorage, August 10 – 13, 2009. Session 1: Understanding and Influencing Physician Behavior: The Strategic Imperative, presenter: Joseph S. Bujak, MD, FACP. (You may remember Dr. Bujak from the ASHNHA Annual Meeting in Sitka a couple of years ago). Session 2: Comprehensive Leadership for Senior-Level Executives, presenter: Thomas A. Atchison, EdD.  If you are unable to join us in Soldotna for this year’s ASHNHA meeting and education sessions and need assistance with tuition for the Alaska Program in Anchorage please contact me.
2) ASHNHA Annual Meeting and Education Sessions – September 8 – 9, 2009 in Soldotna. Education programs in conjunction with the ASHNHA meeting have traditionally been at low or no cost to ACHE/AHEN members. The education programming is currently being determined and members will be notified when the agenda is set. Guaranteed to be the high quality education programming that you have come to expect and we hope to see you there.

3) Annual AHEN Chapter Meeting , Advancement Information Session and Annual Regent Awards, Soldotna, AK  -  September – in conjunction with the ASHNHA meeting.

Seeking Nominations for the Regent’s Awards to be presented in September, 2009.

Each Regent is encouraged to provide an award for outstanding healthcare executives in his or her jurisdiction. ACHE will support two Regent’s Awards each Convocation year with a certificate and an etched crystal sculpture award. The recipients must be active ACHE affiliates or individuals who have contributed to healthcare management but are not eligible for membership. This would include individuals such as those considered for Honorary Fellowship (i.e., trustees, political figures, etc.).

Previous recipients of the Regent’s award include:

 Awarded Affiliate  



 Award Year: 2005



 Joseph C. Fong

 Early Career

 Edward H. Lamb, FACHE

 Jan C. Harris, FACHE

 Senior Level

 Edward H. Lamb, FACHE

 Award Year: 2006



 Erik J. Flexman

 Early Career

 Michael K. Powers, FACHE

 Edward H. Lamb, FACHE

 Senior Level

 Michael K. Powers, FACHE

 Award Year: 2007



 Michelle E. Calvin-Casey, FACHE

 Early Career

 Michael K. Powers, FACHE

 Rod Betit

 Senior Level

 Michael K. Powers, FACHE


Seeking Nominations for:

Early Career Healthcare Executive Award
* An affiliate of the American College of Healthcare Executives
* Demonstration of leadership ability
* Demonstration of innovative and creative management
* Executive capability in developing his/her organization and promoting its growth and stature in the community
* Participation in local, state, or provincial hospital and health association activities
* Participation in civic/community activities and projects
* Demonstration of participation in ACHE activities and interest in assisting ACHE in achieving its objectives

Senior-Level Healthcare Executive Award
* A Fellow of ACHE
* A CEO, COO, or other senior-level executive title within the organization
* Demonstration of leadership ability
* Demonstration of innovative and creative management
* Executive capability in developing his/her organization and promoting its growth and stature in the community
* Contributions to the development of others in the healthcare profession
* Demonstration of leadership in local, state, or provincial hospital and health association activities
* Participation in civic/community activities and projects
* Demonstration of participation in ACHE activities and interest in assisting ACHE in achieving its objectives

Please send nominations to Michelle Calvin-Casey, FACHE no later than July 10, 2009. Include the applicants contact information and a brief statement as to how they meet the criteria. Thank you in advance for your assistance in this matter.

Become Board Certified

Maximize your professional potential by earning the premier credential in healthcare management. When you become board certified in healthcare management as an ACHE Fellow (FACHE), you'll have the knowledge, skills and confidence to succeed. Apply Now and Save $200! Submit your completed Fellow Application with the $250 application fee by June 30, and ACHE will waive the $200 fee to take the Board of Governors Exam once your application has been approved (the waiver is valid for six months). You must be an ACHE Member with at least two years of healthcare management experience to be eligible to apply for Fellow status. All follow-up materials (e.g. references) must be submitted by August 31 for the waiver to be valid.

New Fellows

Congratulations to Kathy Hillburn, RN, FACHE from Anchorage who was recognized at the Convocation Ceremony in Chicago in March 2009.

Regents Advisory Council

I am seeking a “few good” people to assist me with keeping informed of issues and needs in Alaska. As part of the Regents Advisory Council (RAC) you will be called upon for input in regard to education programming, issues and membership needs for our affiliates in Alaska. If you are interested in serving on the RAC please contact me no later than May 15, 2009.

I am privileged to serve you as the Regent for Alaska and take this role very seriously. I would like to hear from you and encourage you to contact me in regard to what ACHE can be doing for you here in Alaska. 


Michelle E. Calvin-Casey, FACHE, SPHR
Alaska Regent – American College of Healthcare Executives
4449 Julep Street
Juneau, AK 99801


Get to Know Your Board Members

Alaska Healthcare Executives Network Board Members were asked to provide a brief biography.  Take a look and learn about the expertise and experience of your Board Members, as follows.


James H. Brooks, FACHE

Executive Director

Providence Anchorage Anesthesia Medical Group, Anchorage, Alaska


Work and Service History:

1973 to 1995—United States Army officer with multiple assignments and commands in maneuver organizations and healthcare administration including service at Ft Wainwright, Alaska from 1986 to 1990 and command of 2d Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, Ft. Benning, Georgia.


Served as the Executive Director/Administrator for White-Wilson Medical Center, Ft Walton Beach, Florida from 1995 to 1999.   Supported all aspects of governance functions for the Board of Directors as they planned, lead, and managed multiple corporations.   The healthcare operation consisted of sixty providers serving several communities from eight locations with a full array of ancillary services (imaging, lab, physical therapy, etc.).   Personally prepared all business plans, pro forma, strategic plans, budgets, developed and coordinated all new construction and renovation plans with the contractors, and managed all daily operations for $42,000,000 in health care operations per year via eight administrative directors.


Served on the Board of Jaymar Shores neighborhood association from 1997 to 1999.  Served on the Board of Potter Creek Homeowners Association from 2000 to 2004.

Served on the Board of the Hospice of Anchorage from 2004 to 2005.


Currently serves as the Executive Director for Providence Anchorage Anesthesia Medical Group (1999 to present).   Support the governance of that corporation via the administrative support of the Board of Directors.   Manage the corporate and daily business operations at the direction of the Board of Directors.   


Education / Credentials: 


BS, Interdepartmental Sciences, Washington and Lee University

MHA, Healthcare Administration, Baylor University

FACHE.  Board certified in healthcare management and Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.  

Member of Medical Group Management Association.




Fishing, Skiing, Reading, Gardening


Married to Deborah Clements Brooks (1971)

Daughter:  Lindsay Brooks Watson.




Dawn Carman


Denali Compliance Group, LLC


Dawn Carman is an experienced health care attorney, executive, and consultant.  She is Principal with the Denali Compliance Group, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in health care corporate governance, compliance, and ethics.  Her firm advises clients on compliance program development and strengthening, assessment and evaluation; investigations; audits; and specialized education and training for boards of directors, senior leaders and staff.


Prior to starting her own firm, Dawn served as Chief Risk & Compliance Officer with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, America’s largest tribal health services organization, where she provided senior leadership for risk management, corporate compliance and institutional review board administration.

Previously, she served as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska, advising the Department of Health and Social Services on the legal aspects of health law policy, Medicare and Medicaid, and fraud and abuse.  She represented the Department in administrative agency hearings, litigation, and appellate cases. Her career also includes many years in health care administration.


Dawn is a frequent speaker on issues related to health law, corporate compliance and ethics, fraud and abuse, physician practice, HIPAA, medical records, EMTALA, and advance directives.  She is published nationally on medical records topics. 


Dawn earned a B.S. degree from the Medical University of South Carolina and a J.D. degree from Loyola University Chicago.  Dawn has attained the following designations: 


Certified in Healthcare Administration/Fellow of the American College of Health Care Executives (FACHE); Certified in Healthcare Compliance (CHC); and Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA). 


Dawn has the following professional affiliations: American College of Healthcare Executives, Fellow; Alaska Healthcare Executives Network, Board Member; Alaska Bar Association, Health Law Section Chair, Alaska Rules of Professional Conduct Committee, member; American Health Lawyers Association, Member; Health Care Compliance Association, Member; Society for Corporate Compliance and Ethics, Member; American Health Information Management Association, Member; and Alaska Health Information Management Association, Member.


Christopher Galloway, R.T.T., M.B.A.

Manager, Cancer Therapy Center

Providence Alaska Medical Center, Anchorage, Alaska


Thirteen years of health systems management experience in varied organizations leading to a developed experience base. This experience base includes developing strategic plans and their implementation. A continuous record of cost reduction derived from innovative clinical integration models. A proven entity with physician practice management, ambulatory services administration, financial management and an international business administration specialist. A record of hospital operations collaboration, operating in academic environments and specialization in cancer services management and design.

Providence Alaska Medical Center, Anchorage Alaska.



The American Registry of Radiologic Technology,                      

The American Society of Radiologic Technologists                     

The Florida Health & Rehabilitation Service,                                

The Texas Department of Health                                                  

The New York Department of Health,                                            

The Massachusetts Department of Health                                    

The National Cancer Registrars Association                               

The American College of Healthcare executives    Member

The Association of Cancer Executives                  Delegate

The Florida Association of Radiologic Science Professionals   Associate




Currently pursuing a PhD in Conflict Analysis and Resolution

Expected completion date 2010


Master of International Business Administration                                                    

Nova Southeastern University, Davie FL.


Bachelor of Science Degree                                                                                   

Howard University Washington DC


Registered Radiation Therapist                                                                              

Howard University Washington DC.




D. Vince Gill, Lt Colonel, USAF, MSC, FACHE

Chief Executive Officer

TRICARE Alaska Program


Lieutenant Colonel Vince Gill has 26-years of local, state, national, and international healthcare experience. Vince is currently the TRICARE Alaska Program Chief Executive Officer (since August 2007).  He is directly responsible for purchased care program operation, contractor oversight, and service line access development totaling $212M in annual claims for over 94,000 beneficiaries statewide.  Vince frequently travels the entire state of Alaska partnering with hospitals and medical practices to resolve healthcare access problems for DoD patients. This is his 2nd assignment to Alaska. 


Vince has a wide background in healthcare administration to include traditional healthcare administration assignments as well as jobs with a larger international significance.  Prior to his current assignment, Colonel Gill was Chief of Medical Plans and Operations for the US Air Forces in Europe ( Ramstein, Germany). As a fellowship trained medical operations and contingency war planner, Colonel Gill supported joint and multinational operations in Europe and Africa. This included medical support planning and mission execution for the World Cup, Winter Olympics, US Presidential trips abroad, counter-terrorism operations, nation building and peace keeping, natural disasters and humanitarian events, US and Russian space recovery missions, theater support to middle eastern conflicts, major non-combatant evacuation operations, and he led planning and operations for some of the largest medical exercises ever conducted by US European Command Forces.


Vince earned his BS (1987) as well as his MBA (1993) from Auburn University. He is a Fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives and serves as local chapter secretary/treasurer.  He is married to Valerie Gill (23 years) and has three children (Andrew, Courtney, and Ellen).  Vince enjoys fishing, hiking, skiing, biking, and jazz.




Bruce W. Johnson, DHA, FACHE

Senior Decision Support Analyst

Alaska Native Medical Center


Bruce Johnson is currently employed at the Alaska Native Medical Center and has served in various planning and decision support roles during the last eight years.    ANMC is a $511M, 150-bed specialty and tertiary referral center with 190 physicians, 525 nurses and 1800 personnel serving a population of 134,000 Alaska Natives.  Prior to those duties he served as a Medical Services Corps Officer with the United States Air Force with progressive assignments at the medical treatment facility culminating at the Pentagon.



His education includes the following:

Medical University of South Carolina, Doctor of Health Administration (2001)

Utah State University, Master of Business Administration (1983)

University of Utah, Bachelor of Arts in Finance: Major, Spanish: Minor (1981)


He is the Chapter President of the Alaska Healthcare Executives Network and has served the profession for the last four years as Secretary, Treasurer and President-Elect of the Alaska Chapter of ACHE. 


He is an avid alpine skier and certified ski instructor.  He serves as a Cub Master.



Married to Diane Woodland (1997)

Son:  Ben Johnson

Daughter:  Janet Johnson



Edward Lamb

Chief Executive Officer & President

Alaska Regional Hospital


Edward Lamb is currently employed as the President/Chief Executive Officer for Alaska Regional Hospital.  Prior to this, Mr. Lamb has held various healthcare executive positions over the past 23 years in Utah, California, Louisiana, and Arizona.


Mr. Lamb is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and is the immediate past Regent for the State of Alaska.   Mr. Lamb has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association since 1999 and served as its Chairman in 2005. 


Mr. Lamb has also been involved in community activities serving on the Board of the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation and as its Chairman in 2005; member of the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce board since 1998 and currently serves as the VP for Marketing for the Greater Alaska Council of the Boy Scouts of America.  He has also served as a Commissioner for the Anchorage Municipal Health & Human Services Commission and serves on the Board of Directors of the Anchorage Symphony since 1998 and served as its President from 2004-2006.


Mr. Lamb is active in his church and has served in various leadership capacities.  He is married to Debra Lamb (29 years) and they have three children; Ryan (Eileen), Josh (Amanda) and Rebecca. They have two granddaughters; Ellie and Evie.


Mr. Lamb holds a B.S. in Medical Technology from Brigham Young University, and a M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix.


Debbi Lehner, FACHE

Chief Operating Officer

Bartlett Regional Hospital


Debbi Lehner joined Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau in November 2007 as the Chief Operating Officer.  She previously served as the Vice President of Ancillary Services at St. Vincent Hospital in Worchester, MA and Administrator of Ancillary & Support Services at Orlando Regional South Seminole Hospital in Longwood, Florida.  Her healthcare career began as a Radiologic Technologist and then moved into Imaging management.  Debbi obtained her Fellow from ACHE in 2007.  She received both her Bachelor’s degree in Health Services Administration and her MBA from the University of Central Florida.   She has been active at the local chapter level for many years, having served as President of the Central Florida Health Care Executive Group for four years and received the Regent’s award for Early Career Healthcare Executive in Florida in 2001.


“I am passionate about making the healthcare experience as positive as possible for all of our customers – this includes our patients, their families, our physicians and our team members.  I believe we can make a difference.”



Michael K. Powers, FACHE, FHFMA

Administrator and Chief Executive Officer

Fairbanks Memorial Hospital/Denali Center


Mike Powers has been with Fairbanks Memorial Hospital/Denali Center for over 23 years.  He started in 1986 as the CFO and 1n 1995 was named CEO.  Mike has a master degree in Healthcare Services Administration, is a licensed nursing home administrator.


Mike is active in numerous health services activities, including serving as past President of the Alaska Hospital Association, an Executive board Member of the Interior Community Health Center, and a Member of the American Hospital Association’s Regional Policy Board




Victor Rosenbaum, FACHE

Veterans' Affairs Services - Alaska


Vic Rosenbaum is a retired Air Force Medical Service Corps Officer from the Air Force now serving with the Veteran's Affairs in Alaska in a leadership role.   He is currently participating in a VA Executive Leadership Training program in Washington D.C.

Lead change by creating a sense of urgency

Leading your group through change requires you to set a good example, one that communicates the urgency of constantly pushing the change along. Here are several tactics to help you do this:

  • Respond promptly to requests. When a staff member wants to talk about issues or problems related to the change, make time as soon as possible. Even if you can’t fill the request immediately, do respond immediately and say when you are available.
  • Highlight your involvement. When you assign tasks to employees, don’t simply tell them what they should do. Also let them know what you will be doing in related areas to advance the change. For example, if an employee will be gathering information to add to a report on your group’s work, describe how you will be contributing, i.e., coordinating others’ contributions, formatting the report and so on.
  • Send continual reminders. These may be in the form of updates about the progress of a specific task, for instance, or a nudge to a specific individual about completing that task.
  • Prune unnecessary work. Balance your attempt to do everything necessary with an equal effort to purge what’s unnecessary. Your crew will respond better to added tasks when they see that extraneous ones will be eliminated.
  • Always be positive. Perhaps the most difficult part of creating a sustainable sense of urgency is the need to not let the pressure get to you or your crew. For example, seeking urgency does not mean abandoning humor and patience, two attitudes that sustain people under pressure.

Adapted from Communication Solutions; (800) 878-5331;

Management by delegation

Here are some key points to remember so you can effectively delegate:

  • Stress results, not details. Make it clear to your staff that you are more concerned about the final outcome of all projects, rather than the day-to-day details that accompany them.
  • Turn the questions around. If an employee comes to you with a problem, ask him or her for possible solutions. If an employee comes to you with a question, ask for possible answers.
  • Establish measurable and concrete objectives. With all staff members, make your objectives clear and specific. Once this is done, your staff will feel more comfortable acting on their own. Think of this plan as a road map and your staff will too.
  • Develop reporting systems. Get your feedback from reporting systems: monthly reports, statistical data or samplings. Or consider weekly meetings with staff.
  • Give strict and realistic deadlines. If you don’t give clear deadlines, employees won’t feel accountable for the completion of their tasks.
  • Keep a delegation log. When you delegate an assignment, jot it down, so you will be able to monitor the progress.
  • Recognize the talents and personalities of your staff. Being a good delegator is like being a good coach of a baseball team. You have to know what projects each staff member can handle, and what projects they can’t.

Adapted from The Manager’s Intelligence Report; (800) 878-5331;

More Information on Save the Dates

by Bruce Johnson, AHEN President

Journal and Networking Club 

Debbi Lehner, Chief Operating Officer at Barlett Regional Hospital, is the Board Member sponsoring the July 24, 2009 Journal Club Call.  Her guest will be a population expert from the State of Alaska Department of Labor.  The topic is as follows:  The Impact of Generations in the Workplace presented by Amanda Holland, State of Alaska, Department of Administration, Division of labor and Personnel.

Alaska Healthcare Executives Network acknowledges Ms. Lehner for a most insightful presentation on Health care trends presented at the May Journal Club with Fred Bayon of the Advisory Board.

Dr. Terry Raymer, Director of Diabetes Services for the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, will present a panel on Diabetes Outreach in the State of Alaska in late August.

First Full Cluster in Alaska Sponsored by the College

The American College of Healthcare Executives will present a full week of category 1 training in Anchorage in August at the Captain Cook Hotel.  Please register early as seats are limited for these events.  Two senior-level executives will present training, Dr. Joseph Bujak and Dr. Thomas Atchison.

State Hospital Association Fall Meeting and Educational Events

Alaska Healthcare Executives Network is pleased to co-sponsor educational panels for category 1 credit, September 8-9, 2009.  The meetings will be held at Central Peninsula's new hospital at Soldotna during the week of the fall conference of the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association.  Guest Speaker from the College is Dr. Rulon Stacey, Ph.D. Chapter annual meeting will also be held.  Stay tuned for more updates.  Panel topics include the following themes and participants:

  • Managing Morale:  Effective Management Techniques to Retain Staff

           James Brooks, FACHE, Providence Anesthesia Group

           Michelle Calvin Casey, FACHE,  Regent for Alaska

  •  Service Line Development

            Christopher Galloway, MBA, RTT, Providence

  • Risk Issues We Face in Our Daily Roles

            Dawn Carman, JD, FACHE, Denail Compliance

            Debra Topham, JD, RN, Clinical Risk Manager, ANMC

            Dr. Norm Wilder, MD, Chief of Medical Staff, Alaska Regional

  • Provision of Acute and Long Term Services

               Chalie Franz and Kathy Kloster

  • University of Alaska Anchorage Technology Advances

            Sally Mead and a panel from the University of Alaska



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