Thirty Health Leadership Fellows Graduate in April 29 Ceremony

Thirty leaders from health and human services organizations throughout western and central New York graduated from the Health Leadership Fellows program at a ceremony held at The Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester, NY on April 29, 2019.

Launched in 2005, the goal of the Health Leadership Fellows program is to produce a network of diverse, highly-skilled leaders who learn to lead collaboratively from both within and outside of their organizations and will become advocates for improved health for older adults and children impacted by poverty.

The 18-month program provided the fellows with opportunities to participate in sessions on personal leadership, leading change, results based leadership and accountability and the leader as a communicator. In addition to the four residential retreats, each fellow met monthly to complete intercession work aligned with the theme of each residential session, and to develop a collaborative inter-organizational project in a small team setting.

Graduates in the eighth class of Health Leadership Fellows include:

From central New York:

Katie Bronson, Home Headquarters

Patricia Carey, Upstate Cerebral Palsy

Bridget Dolbear, Oswego County Opportunities

Jodi Martin Oswego, County Health Department

Brandiss Pearson, St. Joseph’s Health College of Nursing / Syracuse Community Health Center

Rebecca Shultz, Onondaga County Health Department

Manika Suryadevara, SUNY Upstate Medical University

Lauren Wetterhahn, Central New York Care Collaborative

From Western New York:

Betsy Behrend, Say Yes Buffalo

Denise  Bothwell, Elderwood at Lancaster

Renee   Cadzow,  D’Youville College – Center for Research on Physical Activity, Sport, & Health

Aaron Carlson, The Dale Association

Judette Dahleiden,  Catholic Charities of Buffalo

Gary Damon, Jr., Center for Employment Opportunities

Joseph  DiStasio, Lake Shore Behavioral Health

Concetta Ferguson,  People Inc.

Beth Gosch, The WNY Foundation

Marc Howe, Neighborhood Health Center

Pamela Kefi, Deaf Access Services

Jane Mogavero, Patrick P. Lee Foundation

Jessie Mossop, Jericho Road Community Health Center

Rebecca Newberry, Clean Air Coalition

Karen Nicolson, Center for Elder Law and Justice

Brittany Perez, Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA)

Karen Pusateri

Karen Rybicki, Erie County Dept. of Social Services

Karl Shallowhorn, Community Health Center of Buffalo

Constantina Spiropoulos, Main Pediatrics

Joyelle Tedeschi, Catholic Charities of Buffalo

Saralin Tiedeman, Millennium Collaborative Care

Since 2005, the Health Foundation has graduated 208 health leadership fellows from its program. Graduates of the program continue their work as members of the Fellows Action Network, where they work collaboratively to improve care for vulnerable older adults and children in poverty, as well as collectively tackle other critical health issues facing western and central New York.

A ninth cohort of the Health Leadership Fellows is currently in progress. For more information, email For more information, email