Director of the Health Care Reliability and Value Division
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Director of Business Integrity and Continuity
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Director of Operational Excellence
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Global Healthcare Practice Lead
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HealthInformatics@GWU Program Director and Health Services Policy and Management Teaching Instructor
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Executive Change Management Coach
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Dr. Karen Tilstra
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Former Global Vice President of Enterprise Business Improvement & Productivity
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Healthcare Improvement Analytics Director
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VP Medicare and Medicaid Quality Programs
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Senior VP Chief Innovation Officer
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Chief Automation Officer
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Chief Information Officer
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Senior Vice President, Safety Net Transformation, Community Health and Well Being
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Senior Technology Analyst
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Principal Consultant, Digital Process Automation
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Dr. William Maples
President and Chief Executive Officer
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Chief Experience Officer
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Jennifer Ford has been working within the health care industry for over 18 years. She is the Director of the Health Care Reliability and Value division within the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), whichfocuses on the effectiveness and business value of all VHA major investments. These investmentsrequire strategic direction and evidenced-based assessments in order to maximize the intended value ofthe health care outcomes. Therefore, Ms. Ford leads a team that measures the benefits of VHA’s investments to ensure that the Department’s leadership is optimizing the clinical outcomes andoperational productivity of the organization.
Ms. Ford specializes in High Reliability Organizations, Health Care Access, Care within the Community and Health IT programs and products to include theElectronic Health Record (EHR) which supports VHA’s health care model. In addition, she ensures tha health care organizations learn and adopt the products and programs in which they invest to achieve theexpected value, while maintaining a culture of continuous process improvement. Prior to the VA, shehad a successful career in the consulting industry, focusing on business development and programmanagement of Fortune 100 companies.
Ms. Ford is a graduate of American University and has an MBA from George Mason University. She has been a professor for over three years and teaches atGeorgetown University and George Washington University. Ms. Ford has earned a Project Management Professional (PMP) designation and is an expert in the Project Management, Business Management andHealth Informatics fields.
Erich Heneke is currently Director of Business Integrity and Continuity in Mayo Clinic’sSupply Chain Management (SCM). His financial emphasis is in Enterprise & Supplier Risk Management, Audit/Controls and Financial Planning & Analysis. Erich has workedin Mayo SCM for 11 years, focusing his efforts on sound SCM controls, fraudprevention/detection, accuracy of balance sheet accounting and other controls relatedwork, including Mayo’s voluntary Sox compliance.
During his time at Mayo, Erich and his team have completed several projects addressingproper controls with Supply Chain, including: development of an award-winning creditcard risk scoring platform, completion of a segregation of duties project mappingemployees’ accesses across multiple applications, detection of several types ofoverpayments to vendors – including detection, collection and prevention of futureleakage, automated management of pharmaceutical pricing and several other initiatives.
Erin Pelletier is employed at Care England, the second largest health system in Rhode Island, as the Director of Operational Excellence. Here, she has led multiple transformation projects yielding savings over $100 million. As the organization continues to improve, she is installing an integrated approach to system-wide performance improvement activities designed to drive transformational change and maximize financial results.
Erin holds a Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of New Haven, B.S. degree in Mathematics with a concentration in statistics, and is a certified Project Management Professional and Six Sigma Green belt.
Erin lives in scenic Connecticut with her husband and three children. She enjoys cooking and any activity outdoors such as hiking, passing the football, or lounging on the beach.
Jason Warrelmann has been transforming healthcare operations for over 15 years with some of the largest healthcare provider, payer, and pharmacy organizations. He is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt, Change Manager, and Agile coach, which gives him a unique view into what works in a healthcare environment.
Currently, he leads the Healthcare and Life Sciences Practice at UiPath, which focuses on transforming the Healthcare landscape and developing capabilities, integrations, and reusable components that make UiPath a healthcare automation platform and not just a tool that works in healthcare.
Ms. MacTaggart is the HealthInformatics@GWU Program Director and Health Services Policy and Management Teaching Instructor at George Washington University (GWU). MacTaggart has an appointment at the Veteran’s Health Administration.
Professor MacTaggart previously completed a three-year appointment at HHS in the Office of the National Coordinator as a senior adviser in the Office of Care Transformation and has been a county, state, and federal public servant for over 40 years, including serving as Minnesota's Medicaid director. She has been an executive for a nonprofit insurance, an IT vendor, and a for-profit consulting firm. She is on multiple national advisory committees, including HIMSS, e-HI, NASI, and AcademyHealth Education Council.
Teena Wilson, is currently the Executive Change Management Coach, for the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare. Ms. Wilson has over 25 years of project and operational leadership experience. She is an experienced Joint Commission certified Master Change Leader and Green Belt with strong leadership and communications skills.
Ms. Wilson has more than 10 years of experience in developing, utilizing and teaching Robust Process Improvement (RPI®) methodologies and tools to internal and external audiences. Currently, she is responsible for teaching, mentoring and coaching on the Robust Process Improvement® tool set with emphasis on Facilitating Change™, Meeting Facilitation, and Advanced Meeting Facilitation methodologies, and tools to positively affect process improvement, change management, leadership effectiveness and team development.
Karen wants to live in a world where work is fast, people are free, and chocolate is devoid of calories; but in the meantime she has co-founded the award winning, AdventHealth Innovation Lab.
One year after launching FHIL, she co-created the Orlando Magic’s Innovation Lab. Two years later she co- designed the nation’s first undergraduate degree in sustainable Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship.
Since then, she helped other organizations develop innovation labs and has guided more than 28 global healthcare companies through the design thinking process.
To date Karen and her FHIL team have facilitated more than 500 design thinking projects with more than 5050 healthcare professionals, students, faculty, executives and community leaders from around the world.
Karen is a licensed Educational Psychologist, with a PhD in Innovation, Leadership & Change. She has taught and presented nationally and internationally.
Currently Karen lives in Orlando with her artist husband, while their 3 sons make their mark in the world. Karen is the proud owner of the “world’s wackiest dog” who resembles a cross between a raccoon, weasel & opossum.
José Pires serves as the Global Excellence & Innovation (E&I) Leader for Andeavor Corporation, where he oversees the global identification, prioritization and execution of mission critical business improvements and innovations that add value to the company, business partners and external clients in multiple markets.
Prior to his current role, Pires held Excellence and Innovation leadership positions in large, global companies in the electronics (Sony), semiconductor (Cymer-ASML), food (Nestlé) and infrastructure (Black & Veatch) industries. Throughout his career, Pires developed and refined E&I as an award winning program for innovation, leadership development, strategy execution and value creation globally.
Pires is an advisory board leader and keynote speaker for several global conferences on innovation, operational excellence, leadership development, strategy execution, business transformation, customer engagement and growth acceleration.
He holds a Bachelor in Engineering Physics from the University of Kansas and a Master in Business Administration focused in Investment Banking and Entrepreneurship from the University of San Diego.
Cliff Tironi is Managing Partner of Thinaer. Thinaer is an IoT platform that integrates actionable data from highly-calibrated sensors and real-time employee and client feedback to give their clients unparalleled insight into their operations, predictive analytics to see the future, and consultative business process redesign to get improved results. (https://thinaer.io/)
Prior to working with Thinaer, Cliff was the Manager of Performance Analytics at the Fox School of Business at Temple University. At Fox, Cliff was the chief architect and co-creator of RoadMap™, a Microsoft-supported tool for students to visualize their progress on competencies across courses.
Cliff understands the challenges of harnessing never-ending data—and the need to leverage it in imaginative yet impactful ways. He regularly conducts data visualizations workshops to business professionals across all industries, coaching others to embrace a humanized mindset as a means to making data more relatable and, most importantly, actionable.
Fluent in Spanish, Cliff earned his M.B.A. from Arcadia University and his B.S. in Marketing from Siena College.
Maggi Savo, Ph.D. is the Healthcare Improvement Analytics Director for the Quality Alliance at Baylor Scott and White Health. The Quality Alliance is the accountable care organization (ACO) affiliated with the health system.
In this role she leads a team to build machine learning models and implement value-based analytics that enable the Quality Alliance to achieve high quality, cost effective care. This work has contributed to tens of millions of dollars in savings and success in risk-based contracts.
Maggi holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio and is a certified Project Management Professional.
Daniel Weaver spent the first fifteen years of his career advancing through various departments at an international BPO organization. With experience managing multiple disciplines including analytics, business development, operations, financial modeling, and performance management, Daniel advanced to the Director of Analytics and Vice President of Corporate Planning prior to accepting a role in the Healthcare industry with Highmark Inc. in 2013.
Dan helped establish and grow a Stars Quality organization within Highmark, serving as the Director of Programs and successfully achieving 4.0+ Stars ratings for over 5 years. Dan joined the Gateway Health team as the Vice President of Stars, Quality, and Risk Adjustment. In his first year at Gateway, Dan led the company to its first 4.0 Star Rating, improved the NCQA Accreditation rating, and implemented a complete organizational redesign.
Throughout his career, Dan has overseen the development and implementation of analytic-driven and customer-focused programs. Leveraging deep analytics expertise and a strong focus on team development, Dan has created methodologies and infrastructure that drive consistent results. Dan is an industry thought leader that believes in challenging the status quo and embracing innovation.
Mohan, SVP and Chief Innovation Officer at Cambia Health Solutions, guides the Innovation Force (IF) an enterprise wide incubator/accelerator creating and launching 5 companies in 5 years. He reports to the CEO who is accountable for 25 businesses totaling $9 billion.
Mohan joined Regence Group (now a subsidiary of Cambia) as Executive VP and Chief Marketing Executive with the mission to bring consumer-focus, transparency, digital transformation and new business models to the company. Mohan was then assigned the leadership of three health plans for three years. Before joining Cambia, Mohan founded both a venture and a consulting firm; led as President of two software companies, ABC Technologies (sold to SAS) and ProTools Inc. (sold as McAfee).
He is also shaped by senior roles at Intel and Mentor Graphics Corporation at the defining years of the tech industry. He has been an adjunct professor of business at Kellogg School of Management and authored three books – Essentials of Balanced Scorecard, Activity-Based Information Systems, and Strategic Business Transformation. (Wiley & Sons) Mohan has served the Government's Committee on Performance and Accountability for the State of Oregon.
He was also called to serve on the Chronic Care Workgroup under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. His community activities include board roles in United Way and National University of Natural Medicine. He serves as advisor to the Presidents of George Fox University and Great Lakes Institute of Management in India. Lost at America’s Got Talent.
Recruited to build an enterprise wide automation CoE to deliver and enable efficiency improvements for business operations and customers. Change Healthcare supports 5.5k hospitals, 900k physicians, 118k dentists, and 600 laboratories with $14B transactions, $1T claims and 2.2k payer connections. Change healthcare touches 1 in 3 US patient records. Achieved $5mm savings in the first year and achieved annualized savings of $18mm in 18 months with 7 direct reports and 50 contractors.
Andy Tilstra, straight out of the hallowed halls of University of Chicago with a Master of Arts degree, is Creativity Effect's newest Innovation Guru, Andy leads and teaches teams in the art of innovation and creative process. Andy has studied improvisational theater, developed a thriving podcast, “From Away", and designs and produces the educational content for Creativity Effect. When not working his fingers to the bone, you can find Andy playing guitar, drawing, and traveling the world!
Dr. Hammami, a senior health executive and chief health stratgist served as the Senior Vice President for Safety Net Transformation, Community Benefit, Health and Well-Being at Trinity Health. In this role he led the strategy to improve health for individuals and improve the underlying social determinants of health in communities served.
He also led work for Trinity Health's community-based delivery models and public health initiatives and partnered closely with state and national experts to integrate health caredelivery with public health activities. Prior to joining Trinity Health, Dr. Hammami served as Chief Health Officer and Director of the Department of Health, Veterans and Community Wellness in Wayne County, Michigan for almost ten years.
A graduate of Aleppo University, Syria, Dr. Hammami completed his post doctoral research in Pediatrics at the Newborn Center of the University of Tennessee in Memphis, and then accepted a faculty appointment at Wayne State University School of Medicine in Detroit, Michigan and a research position at the Detroit Medical Center, Department of Pediatrics. He then received his Master's degree in Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan.
Kurt Alexander, HCA - My entire career has been focused on healthcare in various capacities. I have worked in data informatics, finance, and most recently information technology as part of HCA’s Enterprise Technology and Architecture team.
I am passionate about technology and understanding how we leverage both existing and upcoming tech to improve the care we provide to our patients. As it relates to automation, the name of the game is delegation. Machines are capable of performing much of the tedious (but necessary) work it takes to keep the lights on. My goal is empowering the myriad teams of HCA with the tools they need to work smart, deliver results quickly, and love the work they do.
Gary Grena BCBS NC - Gary began his career with Caterpillar, Inc. where he worked while completing his engineering degree. After graduation, he progressed thru many supervisory and management positions in Operations and Planning where he helped build some of the biggest construction machines in the world. After moving to a project leadership role, he was on the team that created the construction Industry's first Internet build and quote configurator. Gary earned his Lean 6 Sigma certification in 2005 after leading over a dozen successful continuous improvement projects that produced over $2MM in SOX-compliant savings.
After earning his MBA from the University of North Carolina, Gary was recruited to become a Partner at a startup focusing on high-temperature plasma applications. Gary directed the accounting and financial investment functions for the firm where he worked to raise over $5MM in investment capital. Gary gained an expensive education in the necessity of driving hard-dollar value and cash flow during his 5 years working at this eventually unsuccessful venture.
Gary has worked at Blue Cross, North Carolina for the last 5 years where he has been part of the team that launched the Digital Process automation program at BCNC in 2017. This program has delivered over $7MM in annual hard-dollar, auditable value. Gary has created a financial reporting framework that accurately communicates the financial value of automation to executive leaders. This framework has been instrumental in gaining our internal investor support for continued year-over-year investment. Gary is currently leading a team to expand and accelerate robotic development beyond IT by developing our employees to become Citizen Developers who can build their own robots.
William J. Maples, M.D. - Dr. Maples is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of the Institute for Healthcare Excellence, a national organization supporting care redesign and cultural transformation in delivery systems across the United States.
Dr. Maples earned his undergraduate, Masters in Oncology, and medical degrees at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. He completed his residency and fellowship in Medical Oncology at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine. Dr. Maples practiced Medical Oncology for 25 years at Mayo Clinic and helped lead the Mayo Clinic quality, safety, and experience journey.
He then served as Senior Vice President and Chief Quality Officer at Mission Health in Asheville, North Carolina where he helped Mission Health navigate cultural transformation and become a leading healthcare organization recognized for its impeccable quality and safety. Dr. Maples more recently served as Chief Medical Officer of Professional Research Consultants, Inc. Dr. Maples is an Associate Professor Emeritus of Oncology at the Mayo College of Medicine and a Clinical Professor at Brooks College of Health at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville.
Jennifer is a fierce advocate for connecting things, concepts and people, seen and unseen, that positively move the patient experience forward. Before joining The Institute for Healthcare Excellence in 2016, her obsession with the voice of the patient and family helped several health systems in Minnesota achieve and sustain remarkable patient experience performance. Jennifer also worked to help organizations generate revenue, inspire engagement and drive positivechange.
Jennifer, often described as a social chemist, believes that kindness and thoughtfulness is a key ingredient for creating meaningful relationships while still being focused on generating growth and loyalty for the organization. Her ability to lead, inspire, manage and mentor employees, providers and community made her a perfect fit for Chief Experience Officer at the Institute for Healthcare Excellence. While Jennifer takes great pride in her work, her true north remains her family, friends and relationships she develops. A graduate of the College of St. Benedict, she holds a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies/Communications.