RCPA - Rehabilitation and Community Providers Association


Leadership Changes at OMHSAS
April 22, 2010

Multiple staff changes are underway at the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS). Deputy Secretary Joan Erney will leave in May. Ms. Erney is among the top ten longest serving state behavioral health program directors in the nation. Sherry Snyder will become acting deputy secretary. Julie Barley from the Harrisburg Field Office will step into the position vacated by Snyder as director of the Division of Eastern Operations. Kelly Wayda will be acting Harrisburg Field Office community program manager.

Valerie Vicari, former Pittsburgh Field Office community program manager, is acting CEO of Warren State Hospital, following the retirement of David Kucherawy and Ray Jaquette is the acting community program manager. Donna Ashbridge, former CEO of Danville State Hospital is now acting director, Bureau of Community and Hospital Operations, taking the place of the retiring Aidan Altenor. Dr. Altenor continues involvement with the closure of Allentown State Hospital. Linda Lesher is acting CEO at Danville. Mary Jeanne Serafin retired as CEO of Allentown State Hospital and continues as acting CEO. Robbie Altenor retired as a special assistant to the deputy secretary and is working as an annuitant on the Allentown State Hospital closure. Jessica Bradley, executive assistant for consumer and family issues, will assume many of Ms. Altenor’s former responsibilities, including forensics.

Candace Orr plans to retire in December as director of the Division of Systems Management in the Bureau of Quality Systems and Clinical Review. Ivonne Bucher is chief operating officer and associate clinical director. Director of the Division of Western Operations Linda Zelch intends to leave in August and Medical Director Mary Diamond in the fall. PCPA will notify members of additional changes as information becomes available. PCPA congratulates these OMHSAS leaders and wishes each of them well for the future.


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