BOCC appoints 2 new members to MRH’s Board of Trustees
In light of Cathrine Blevins’ resignation and pushback from the community regarding the Board of Trustees at Memorial Regional Health, Moffat County’s Board of County Commissioners appointed two new members to the BOT during Tuesday morning’s meeting.
Commissioners Don Cook, Ray Beck, and Donald Broom appointed Chandler Larsen to a one-year term, filling Blevins’ seat following her resignation. Commissioners Cook, Beck, and Broom then appointed Denise Arola to a full five-year term on MRH’s Board of Trustees.
Prior to appointing Larsen and Arola, Commissioner Cook said that the BOCC had just three applicants total.
“We interviewed people on Friday and we only had three applicants,” Commissioner Cook said. “That’s part of the problem with this community; people are complaining and want change, but aren’t stepping forward to address the problem and try to be part of the solution.”
Larsen, who recently moved to Craig in May 2019 with his wife, has experience in healthcare. Larsen currently works as the Nursing Home Administrator at Sandrock Ridge Care & Rehab.
In his letter expressing interest to the BOCC, Larsen said, “I know that my experience will be a great benefit to Memorial Regional Health Board of Trustees. I know that being new in the community that my outlook will be a great benefit to the Board as I will bring fresh insight, ideas, and perspectives.”
Commissioners Cook, Beck and Broom unanimously approved Larsen’s appointment to the board for the one-year term.
“I’m just glad in the interview that Chandler was very open and honest with us,” Commissioner Beck said. “He said he may be young and doesn’t know all there is to know about the financial side of things, but we really appreciated him being open and honest in the interview process.”
“He hasn’t been here long,” Commissioner Broom added. “So that might be a good thing for the Board.”
Arola, a former Controller at MRH for seven years and the Chief Financial Officer for two years, retired from MRH in June of 2018.
“I believe that my time with MRH has provided vast insight into the financial and operational aspects of the organization,” Arola said in her letter of interest to the BOCC. “As a member of the Board of Trustees, I can share my experience and knowledge with the Board to assist in making informed decisions.
“I have been a resident of Craig for 26 years,” Arola continued. “I am passionate about the well-being of our local hospital. I believe it is important to provide quality healthcare and customer service to our community while maintaining financial stability.”
“I’ve known Denise for a long time and watched her grow,” Commissioner Cook said. “She’s very good at what she does and is very knowledgeable in the financial world, so we’re excited about her going forward and representing the community.”
“She even educated us in some areas during her interview process,” Commissioner Beck added.
On top of appointing Arola and Larsen to MRH’s Board of Trustees, the BOCC reappointed Tom Gray to the Colorado River District Board. With water becoming a major, critical issue within the state, the BOCC felt it was necessary to keep someone as knowledgeable as Gray on the Colorado River District Board moving forward.
Following the BOCC meeting, the commissioners held two interviews for the emergency management position that oversees that county, which has been vacant since September 2019 after the county dropped the position from a full-time gig to part time.
In late November 2019, county commissioners approved the position moving back into a full-time gig.
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The board of trustees of Memorial Regional Health appointed its current chief operating officer, Jennifer Riley, as the interim chief executive officer following a Thursday-night meeting of the board.