SDSU School of Public Health Advisory Board
The School of Public Health (SPH) Advisory Board consists of leaders from government, healthcare, community health, business and academia. The role of the advisory board is to provide advice and assistance to SPH through strategic advice and listening sessions, as well as in building relationships with alumni, the broader region, and various external sectors.
Amy Adome, MD
Senior Vice President of Clinical Effectiveness
In her role as senior vice president of clinical effectiveness for Sharp HealthCare, Amy Adome, MD, is responsible for leading efforts to maintain and improve the quality of patient care across the Sharp system, which includes four acute-care hospitals, three specialty hospitals and two affiliated medical groups. Dr. Adome works with a variety of groups within Sharp including clinical research and physician services, institutional review board, continuing medical education, service lines and performance improvement. In addition, she works collaboratively with physicians, nurses and health professionals to develop, define and deliver quality patient care, using quality assessment and monitoring techniques.
Dimitrios Alexiou, FACHE
President and CEO
Hospital Association of San Diego & Imperial Counties
Dimitrios Alexiou, FACHE, is the President and CEO of Hospital Association of San Diego and Imperial Counties(Hospital Association), a non-profit trade association representing hospitals and health systems. Mr. Alexiou joined the Hospital Association in December 2014.
As President/CEO of HASD&IC, Mr. Alexiou provides leadership, representation, advocacy, and acts as an advisory on behalf of over 38 hospitals and health systems in the 2-county region. He also participates in the California Hospital Association’s Executive Management Group, representing nearly 450 hospitals and health systems statewide; and on CHA special committees to address issues of quality and patient safety, managed care, finance, and issues specific to non-profit hospitals, integrated systems, and academic medical centers. Nationally, he is engaged in hospital issues through the American Hospital Association Region Nine Policy Board and the Conference of Metropolitan & Regional Hospital Associations.
Regionally, Dimitriosis active on a number of health-related boards and committees, including the County of San Diego’s Health Services Advisory Board and Healthy San Diego; San Diegans for Healthcare Coverage Board; San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce Health Committee; County of San Diego Regional Task Force on the Homeless Governance Board; 2-1-1 San Diego Community Information Exchange (CIE) Advisory Board; San Diego Health Connect Board and the Children’s Initiative Board. He is also a member of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association Board and Issues Subcommittee on Quality of Life.
Mr. Alexiou was previously the Regional Vice President for the Hospital Association of Southern California (HASC), where he worked with hospital executives, county administrators, and elected officials in Riverside and San Bernardino counties on administrative, public policy and regulatory issues affecting patients, hospitals and health care. He was also adjunct faculty at California State University, San Bernardino and California State University, Northridge, teaching in the master’sin health administration program.
Prior to joining HASC, Dimitrios served as Chief Operating Officer for Totally Kids Specialty Healthcare in Loma Linda, and previously worked for HASC as an administrative fellow in advocacy and government relations. Before that, he was Associate Director for the Providence Center for Community Health Improvement.
Dimitrios has a Master’s degree in Health Administration from California State University, Northridge and a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Arizona. In addition, he is a fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives, a board member for the Health Care Executives of Southern California and a board member for the CSU Northridge health administration alumni.
Irma Cota, MPH
President and CEO
North County Health Services
Irma Cota, MPH, is the president and chief executive officer of North County Health Services (NCHS). For more than 20 years, Irma has had experience working in executive management, strategic program planning, finance, and operational management. Under her leadership, NCHS serves more than 62,000 individuals annually at eleven clinic locations, providing comprehensive medical, dental, mental and other related health services. Irma oversees more than a $60 million budget, more than 700 employees, and a variety of programs to provide health services and outreach to the community.
Irma is an active member of the San Diego Community. She serves as the Chair for the Board of Managers for Integrated Health Partners of the San Diego Council of Clinics and Secretary for the Board of Health Center Partners (HCP) of Southern California. In addition, Irma is a member of the Board of Directors for the Elizabeth Hospice; City National Bank Advisory Board; California State University, San Marcos University Council; Palomar College President’s Circle; California Department of Public Health, Office of Binational Boarder Health; and Latino Health Coalition.
Jennifer Covin, MPH
Director of Programs
Health Quality Partners
Jennifer Covin is the Director of Programs at Health Quality Partners of Southern California, a subsidiary of Health Center Partners. Health Center Partners serves as the primary voice and health care policy advocate for community health centers that serve the health needs of communities throughout Southern California (San Diego, Riverside and Imperial counties). In collaboration with a team of Program Managers, Jennifer oversees grant sponsored programs and services aimed at meeting the needs of patients in the Health Center Partners member organizations. Prior to joining HQP, she worked in the academic arena at both SDSU and UCSD for 20+ years managing federal and state funded public health research studies and programs aimed at preventing the leading causes of disease and managing chronic health issues in the primary care setting with adolescents and adults. Jennifer is a graduate of San Diego State University. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Sciences and a Master of Public Health with an emphasis in Health Promotion.
Kenneth C. Earhart, MD
Naval Health Research Center
Dr. Kenneth C. (Ken) Earhart serves as the Principal Director of Research at the Naval Health Research Center (NHRC). NHRC, located on Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego is part of the U.S. Navy’s medical research enterprise and is the Department of Defense’s Center for Deployment Health Research executing a diverse research portfolio focused on the health and readiness of our armed forces and their families. As the Chief Science Executive and senior civilian, Dr. Earhart advises the command leadership, provides guidance to the science directorates, their programs and staff, and oversees the command’s research portfolio and operational support.
Amy Harbert, MBA
San Diego County Department of Environmental Health
Amy Harbert is an executive manager with local government experience in government affairs/public policy, operations management, organizational culture development, and communication/media relations with more than seventeen years with the County of San Diego. Amy Harbert currently serves as the Assistant Director for the County’s Department of Environmental Health implementing enforcement of local, state and federal laws in more than 40 public health and safety program areas, such as restaurant and hazardous materials inspections, vector control, and beach water quality monitoring. Amy Harbert provides executive leadership of a $55 million annual operating budget supporting 309 staff. She has a passion for and a successful track record of using data analytics to guide outcome based operations management and implementing technology to streamline operations, gain efficiencies and improve program performance.
She also served as a legislative policy manager for County Chief Administrative Office of Strategy and Intergovernmental Affairs implementing advocating efforts for the County at the state and federal level for public safety, community services, health and human, land use and environment and general government. Amy Harbert also functioned in various leadership roles the County’s Department of Parks and Recreation, including marketing manager, chief of operations, and deputy director which included managing 100 full time employees, 140 part time employees, 3,000 volunteers who all operate more than 100 parks and facilities and thousands of programs.
In addition to her local government experience, Amy Harbert has private sector public relations experience, working with industries including healthcare, nonprofits, hospitality and business. Amy Harbert holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication as well as a Master’s degree in Business Administration. When not at work, Amy Harbert enjoys spending time with her husband, son, daughter, friends and neighbors. Evenings and weekends, she can frequently be found attending her family’s various sporting events in the Carlsbad community. She enjoys running and yoga as well as volunteering for various local nonprofits that focus on youth.
Sarah Lyman, MBA
Alliance Healthcare Foundation
Sarah joined the Alliance Healthcare Foundation as its Executive Director in July 2019. Alliance Healthcare Foundation works to advance health and wellness for the most vulnerable in San Diego and Imperial Counties.
With nearly a decade of experience catalyzing results in health philanthropy, Sarah brings unique leadership to the intersection of population health, systems change and collaboration in order to advance health equity. Prior to joining Alliance, Sarah served as the Executive Vice President for Empire Health Foundation (EHF) in eastern Washington State, which oversees $70 million per year in funding. She is passionate about finding solutions to complex social issues and creating sustainable positive impact. While at EHF, Sarah was instrumental in designing and building the organization from its inception into a thriving agent for community change, leveraging and managing resources over 18x its annual endowed grant making.
She was also a key leader in the effort to launch Family Impact Network, the first network administrator in Washington to implement performance-based contracting in the child welfare system. In 2017, Sarah established Washington State’s first Program Administrator for the $100 million Andy Hill Cancer Research Endowment and served as the organization’s inaugural Executive Director. Notable honors include the Council on Foundations and HUD Secretary’s Award for Public Philanthropic Partnership, and a first-place award for small businesses in “Best Places to Work” by the Journal of Business. In 2014, Sarah was selected as one of Terrance Keenan Institute’s Emerging Leaders in Health Philanthropy through Grant Makers in Health.
Nick Macchione, MPH
Director and Deputy Chief Administrator
HHSA, County of San Diego
With over 30 years’ experience in the delivery, management and public policy of health and human services, Nick Macchione serves as San Diego County’s Director of the Health and Human Services Agency. Also, he oversees the operations of the County’s Psychiatric Hospital; Edgemoor Skilled Nursing Facility; Children’s Emergency Shelter; and a residential high school for foster youth. Macchione implements policy direction for an elected Board of Supervisors and works closely with other elected leaders, including executive/legislative branches from states, federal, and international governments, city mayors/councilmen, district attorney, sheriff and superior court judges.
Throughout his entire public service career, Macchione has served as a community strategist, convener, and leader of large scale population-based improvements. Most notably, during the past nearly 9 years in his role as Agency Director, he has helped develop, implement and grow a bold and ambitious county- wide “social movement” known as Live Well San Diego. Most recently, he was named by Governing Magazine as a national Public Official of the Year for his career accomplishments in developing innovative health, housing and human services.
Eva Matthews, MPH
Laura Rodriguez Research Institute at Family Health Centers of San Diego
Director of Grants
Family Health Centers of San Diego
Eva Matthews serves in a dual role at Family Health Centers of San Diego (FHCSD): as Executive Director of FHCSD’s Laura Rodriguez Research Institute (LRRI) and Director of Grants Management for FHCSD. FHCSD’s mission is to provide caring, aﬀordable, high-quality health care and supportive services to everyone, with a special commitment to uninsured, low-income and medically underserved persons. LRRI seeks to conduct responsible, culturally responsive, community-engaged clinical and population-based health research in the uniquely real-world setting found in community health centers with a special commitment to uninsured, low income, and medically underserved persons. Our overarching vision is to ensure that health innovation engages and benefits the underserved.
Eva is an experienced and mission-driven leader who seeks to foster meaningful research, partnerships and programs to benefit the health and well-being of underserved communities. Eva holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Arizona and has 25 years of experience crosscutting clinical and public health research, as well as grants development and administration in both academic and community-based settings.
Vice President of Community Health & Engagement at Community Health Improvement Partners (CHIP)
He has worked in community-based public health in San Diego County for 22 years, and has vast experience in community mobilization, hospital community benefit, prevention programming, public health systems change, policy advocacy for substance abuse and obesity prevention, and behavioral health.
In his role at CHIP, Dana oversees the efforts of the San Diego County Suicide Prevention Council, the
Lemon Grove Healthy Eating Active Living Zone, and Resident Leadership Academy programs.
Jennifer Radin, MPH, PhD
Dr. Jennifer Radin is an epidemiologist and clinical researcher with the Digital Medicine Division at Scripps Research Translational Institute. She conducts research to improve disease prediction and prevention by incorporating digital devices, sensors, and platforms. Dr. Radin is the P.I. for DETECT, an app-based research study that seeks to understand if data from wearable devices can provide early indications of viral infections, such as influenza and COVID-19. She has over 10 years of epidemiological and digital health experience with prior work on respiratory disease surveillance, vaccines, and diagnostics at both the Centers for Disease Control and Naval Health Research Center. Jennifer received her doctoral degree in Epidemiology from the University of California, San Diego and San Diego State University. She also holds a Master of Public Health degree, specializing in Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, from Yale University and a bachelor’s degree in Biology from the College of William and Mary.
Barb Robinette, MPH
Marketing Communications Vice President
Coventry & SPH Alumni Board Chair
Barb graduated with an MPH from the SPH in 1989, with an emphasis in Health Services Administration – now better known as HMP. She is the Vice President of Marketing for the Coventry Workers’ Comp Services division of Aetna. Barb is a strategic marketing leader with 25+ years of experience leading high-growth initiatives in B2B health care and insurance markets through the development of first-ever integrated marketing strategies. She has responsibility for a nearly $1 billion insurance division, building and leading teams in overall marketing practices, marketing organization/leadership, business development, market positioning, multi-channel advertising, social engagement, customer database, digital and traditional marketing initiatives, and e-commerce. She has expertise in B2B Marketing, Product Development, Marketing Strategy and Operations in Healthcare, Insurance, Workers’ Compensation and Managed Care.
Patrick Tellez, MD, MPH, MSHA
Chief Medical Officer of Community Health Group
Dr. Tellez currently serves as Chief Medical Officer of Community Health Group, a non-profit managed MediCal & Medicare health plan serving approximately 250,000 residents of San Diego.
Dr. Tellez professional experience encompasses medical practice, medical management and executive leadership experience within payer and provider owned commercial and Medicaid/Medicare health plans as well as medical leadership of multispecialty medical group practice under both capitated and/or FFS environments and of multi-center federally qualified community health center practices.
Dr. Tellez is a graduate of the University of Minnesota School of Medicine; is Board certified, American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Immunology & Allergy. He holds a Masters in Public Health from UCLA and Master of Science in Health Administration from University of Colorado Graduate School of Business.
He is a member, American Medical Association, California Medical Association and of the Board of Directors, San Diego County Medical Society.
Wilma J. Wooten, MD, MPH
Public Health Officer
HHSA, County of San Diego
Dr. Wilma J. Wooten is the public health officer for the County of San Diego. She received both of her professional degrees from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, followed by the completion of residency training at the Georgetown/Providence Hospital Family Practice Residency Program in Washington, DC. In 1989, she completed the joint San Diego State University (SDSU), Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH)/University of California San Diego (UCSD) Preventive Medicine Residency, with an emphasis in Sports Medicine.
Dr. Wooten practiced medicine as a faculty member in the UCSD Department of Family and Preventive Medicine from 1990 to 2001. She remains a UCSD volunteer Associate Clinical Professor and is an Adjunct Professor at SDSU/GSPH. She has been with the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency since 2001, initially as the Deputy Health Officer and now serves as the Public Health Officer since February 2007. She is an ardent supporter of public health and has a strong interest in health disparities and health equity.
Dr. Wooten is a past Board member, and past president (2011-13), of the California Conference of Local Health Officers (CCLHO); current Board member, and past President (2013-15) of the Health Officers Association of California (HOAC); and past Board member (2009-2011) of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO). Dr. Wooten is a current Board member of the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) of Directors (2011-present), member of the NACCHO Big Cities Health Coalition (2014-present), and member of the Advisory Committee to the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (2015-present).