AHI Celebrates National Rural Health Day, Announces 2017 Rural Health Champions

In recognition of National Rural Health Day, November 16, AHI – Adirondack Health Institute announces three 2017 Rural Health Champions. The annual Rural Health Champion recognition program is a collaborative effort of four of the North Country’s Rural Health Networks, including the Adirondack Rural Health Network (ARHN), a program of AHI supported with funds from the NYS Department of Health Charles D. Cook Office of Rural Health. Every year since 2015, the Rural Health Networks in Northern New York ask their network partners to nominate individuals who exemplify the selfless, community-minded, can-do spirit that prevails in rural America.  

2017 Rural Health Champions:

  • Carol Byron, Care Coordinator, Glens Falls Hospital Family Health Center
    2017 Rural Health Champion, Healthcare Collaboration

“Carol is devoted to her patients and is very adept at thinking out of the box to meet their needs. She meets patients on common ground so she can get them the care they need.”
~ Nominating colleague Kathy Jo McIntyre, Washington County Public Health.

  • Kim Cook, President and CEO, The Open Door Mission
    2017 Rural Health Champion, Community Impact

“Kim Cook has been instrumental in serving Warren and Washington Counties both while raising her family and serving the community.  Her passion is serving women, men and children at their point of need, cultivating personal growth and community sustainability.”
~ Nominating colleagues Cathleen Traver, Glens Falls Hospital, Tucker Slingerland, MD, Hudson Headwaters Health Network, Andy Cruikshank, Fort Hudson Health System, and Mary McLaughlin, AHI – Adirondack Health Institute.

  • Dr. Irina Gelman, Director, Fulton County Public Health
    2017 Rural Health Champion, Public Health 

“I cannot completely express my appreciation and respect for Dr. Gelman. As a resident of Fulton County, I share her dream for making the county healthy. As a co-worker, I admire her drive and dedication to reach those dreams. She is a sheer force of nature; if you know her, you know this is accurate.”
~ Nominating colleague Angela Stuart-Palmer, Montgomery County Public Health.

“Rural regions have distinctive health care needs that require those who provide care and community support services to possess unique abilities, drive, and dedication,” said Eric Burton, Interim CEO, AHI – Adirondack Health Institute. “Carol Byron, Kim Cook and Dr. Irina Gelman share the common attribute of being recognized leaders in the facilitation of exceptional health care services in their respective communities. All three are highly-deserving of this recognition.”

Created by the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH), National Rural Health Day showcases the work being done to address the unique health care needs of rural communities. For more information, please visit www.nosorh.org/nrhd.