ACH News & Announcements

ACH Announces 2021 Board of Directors & Appreciations

The end of the year is a time of transition for ACH. As we close out 2020, we also want to recognize the board members who have come to the end of their terms on the ACH Board of Directors.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020


Judy Chang, MD, MPH, will begin her two-year term as President of the Academy of Communication in Healthcare (ACH) in January 2021. Judy serves as Associate Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences with a secondary appointment in the Division of General Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh, investigator at the Magee-Women's Research Institute, core faculty member in the Center for Research in Health Care and Center for Women's Health Research and Innovation, and Assistant Dean of Medical Student Research. Judy previously served on the ACH Board of Directors as the Vice President of Research before assuming the President-Elect position and now the President position. 

2019-2020 ACH President Kara Myers, CNM, MS, FACH, will transition to the role of Past President in January 2021. Kara has been practicing nurse-midwifery since 2000, when she completed graduate training at UCSF. She is currently Clinical Professor in the UCSF Department of OB, Gyn, and Reproductive Sciences. Her clinical practice sites are Zuckerberg San Francisco General (ZSFG) and Mission Neighborhood Health Center. Additionally, she serves as a member of the leadership council for the nurse-midwifery faculty practice at ZSFG. Kara co-directs the Relationship Centered Communication program at ZSFG and was a founding co-director of the Relationship Centered Communication Facilitators program for the ACH. Within the UCSF community and nationally, as faculty of ACH, she regularly facilitates workshops in relationship centered communication, conflict, and feedback. In collaboration with colleagues, she has designed and implemented workshops focusing on the application of relationship centered communication to the promotion of equity in health care and health professions education.

The ACH membership approved the appointment of a new officer to the Board of Directors for 2021: 

Treasurer: Carli Zegers, PhD, FNP-BC has recently joined the University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Nursing and Health Sciences as an Assistant Professor. Dr. Zegers graduated with both her Ph.D. and Family Nurse Practitioner degrees at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Her PhD is in nursing with an emphasis on health literacy, self-management strategies, and underserved populations. She is currently the Principle Investigator of the KC HealthTracks grant through the Office of Minority Health focused on developing a pipeline program for high school students from underrepresented and underserved backgrounds into healthcare professions. In efforts to increase diversity in the nursing field, Dr. Zegers founded the Nebraska Chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses and the Diverse Nurse Federation in Nebraska. She now serves on the National Board of Directors for NAHN. Dr. Zegers is committed to improving the health of underserved and diverse populations and communities through practice, research, health policy, and leadership.

The ACH membership elected two new Board members for 2021: 
•  Yuriko de la Cruz, MPH, National Association of Community Health Centers, will serve as an at-large Board member for a 2-year term.  
• Noelle Spencer, BA, MSc, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, will serve as an at-large Board member for a 2-year term.

Continuing Executive Committee members include: 
•    Denise Davis, MD, FACH, Vice President, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
•    Christopher Koenig, PhD, FACH, Vice President, Research
•    Lynn O'Neill, MD, FAAHPM, Vice President, Internal Education 

Continuing Board members include:  
•    Daniella Cordero, BS Neuroscience, Medical student year 4, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)
•    Pamela Duke, MD, FACH, Drexel University College of Medicine
•    Timothy Gilligan, MD, MS, FACH, Cleveland Clinic 
•    Kirsten Isgro, PhD, State University of New York/University of Vermont
•    Barbara Lewis, MBA, Joan's Family Bill of Rights 
•    Nynikka Palmer, DrPH, MPH, University of California, San Francisco
•    Jhoanna Santos, MD, Skagit Regional Health
•    Bronwyn Wilson, MD, MPH, MS Education, University of New Mexico


Thank you to:

•    Raymond Curry, MD, FACP, FACH, ACH Board of Directors 2015-2020 and Treasurer 2017-2020
•    Michael Farrell, MD, FACH, ACH Board of Directors 2015-2020
•    Krista Hirschmann, PhD, FACH, ACH Board of Directors and Vice President, External Education 2019-2020

Thank you all for your active leadership as stewards of ACH! You have all played instrumental roles in guiding the ACH mission with your insights and unique expertise. 

In addition, thank you to Kara Myers, CNM, MS, FACH, who will remain on the Board, but comes to the end of her two-year ACH Presidency this year. We appreciate all that you have done in this pivotal role leading the Academy. You are an inspiration! 


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