Hospital association names board chairwoman and Caregiver of the Year

Posted June 22, 2011, at 9:01 p.m.

ROCKPORT, Maine — Marie Vienneau, CEO and chief nursing officer of Millinocket Regional Hospital, was installed Wednesday night as the chairwoman of the Maine Hospital Association  board of directors. Vienneau’s swearing-in took place at the opening night dinner of the hospital association’s annual summer meeting at the Samoset Resort.

Vienneau succeeds Jud Knox, CEO of York Hospital.

Vienneau began her career at Millinocket Regional Hospital in 1990 as a nurse in the special care unit. She was named CEO in 2002.

Other officers named at the meeting include William Caron, president of MaineHealth in Portland, as chairman-elect; Art Blank, CEO of Mount Desert Island Hospital in Bar Harbor, as treasurer; and Michelle Hood, CEO of Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems, as secretary.

New board members include Sylvia Getman, CEO of The Aroostook Medical Center in Presque Isle; Chuck Hayes, CEO of MaineGeneral Medical Center in Waterville; Michael Lally, CEO of Calais Regional Hospital; and Rebecca Ryder, CEO of Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington.

Also at the meeting, volunteer Betty Walker of Cary Medical Center in Caribou was named the hospital association’s Caregiver of the Year. Walker joined the staff at Cary Medical Center as a receptionist in 1986. Inspired by physician and humorist Patch Adams, Walker formed a group known as the Hooters who played spoons, danced, sang, read poetry and entertained patients and visitors at the hospital as well as in area nursing homes. Walker also oversees the hospital’s extensive volunteer program and organizes blood drives and the annual talent show fundraiser. In 2010, Walker was diagnosed with cancer, which is now in remission.

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