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VA Palo Alto Health Care System

 

Leadership Team

Portrait of Gloria Martinez, RN, MS

Gloria Martinez, RN, MS | 650-493-5000

Acting Director

Gloria Martinez is currently serving as Acting Director at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. She was appointed to the position on February 10, 2017.

Ms. Martinez has been the Associate Director for Patient Care and Nursing Services at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. She was appointed to the position January 2009.

As a member of VA Palo Alto Health Care System executive team, Ms. Martinez is responsible for strategic planning, clinical outcomes and financial management at one of the most complex (1A) health care systems in Veterans Health Administration, with more than 6,300 staff and volunteers, and 808 operating beds.

Ms. Martinez worked her way through nursing school in various positions, receiving her Associate of Science in Nursing from Grossmont College in El Cajon, Calif., in 1981. She completed her bachelor's and master's degree from the University of California at San Francisco, Calif., in 1986 and began her VA Career in 1987 as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Neurosurgery. In 1990, Ms. Martinez began her management career as the Associate Chief Nurse for Nursing Services and Education, then Associate Chief Nurse at the Livermore VA, Calif. She served as Associate Chief Nurse at the Syracuse VA, NY (1995-1998) where she became co-leader of the Geriatric and Extended Care Line when care lines were first introduced. In 1999, she became the Associate Chief of Staff for In-Patient Care at the Carl T. Hayden VA, Phoenix, Ariz.

In 1999-2005, she served as the Associate Medical Center Director for Ambulatory Services and Deputy Nurse Executive at the Greater Los Angeles VA Healthcare System, Calif. Prior to joining the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, she served as Associate Medical Center Director for Patient Care Services and Nursing at the VA San Francisco Medical Center.


Portrait of Thomas J. Fitzgerald III, CHESP

Thomas J. Fitzgerald III, CHESP | 650-493-5000

Deputy Director

His duties and responsibilities include serving as the Chief Operating Officer for the Health Care System. As a member of the executive leadership team, he oversees one of the most complex facilities in the VA system with an annual budget in excess of $891 million, more than 6,300 staff and volunteers, 808 operating beds spread between three divisions, and a myriad of special programs. He also has an important role in maintaining a cooperative and supportive relationship with the health care system's educational affiliate Stanford University School of Medicine, as well as other affiliations in allied health programs and community health institutions.

Mr. Fitzgerald is a service-connected disabled Veteran who served in the U.S. Army for 16 years as a medical non-commissioned officer. During that time, he served in support of Operation Desert Storm. Mr. Fitzgerald began his VA Career in 1988 as a Nursing Assistant at the North Chicago VA Medical Center, Ill., in numerous positions, including Housekeeping Aid, Housekeeping Assistant General Foreman, Assistant Chief Environmental Care and Operations, and the Chief of Environmental Care and Operations. He served as Chief of Environmental Management Service at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, and the Assistant Director at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System from October 2006 to May 2011 and the Associate Director May 2011 to February 2013.

Mr. Fitzgerald attended Grambling State University, La., on a football scholarship. He is also a graduate of American Intercontinental University, the VA management development course (VAMD, in conjunction with the University of Alabama Birmingham), the Leadership VA 2003 class, and Health Care Leadership Institute 2007.

Mr. Fitzgerald was the Interim Director at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System from June 13, 2016 - February 9, 2017.


Portrait of Nora Lynn B. Dwinell, MHS

Nora Lynn B. Dwinell, MHS | 650-493-5000

Acting Associate Director

Nora Lynn B. Dwinell is the Acting Associate Director at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. She was appointed to this position on December 12, 2016. As a member of the executive leadership team, Ms. Dwinell participates in management discussions, decisions, and policy making for the health care system.

Ms. Dwinell was appointed as the East Bay Operations Manager in November 2014. Her duties and responsibilities include providing oversight for planning and directing administrative and clinical operational activities for all services and programs at the Livermore Division and Community Based Outpatient Clinics in Fremont, Modesto, Sonora, and Stockton. She is an active member of the Strategic Planning Leadership Board and co-chairs the Operations Council.

Ms. Dwinell began her Federal career as a Public Health Analyst for the Department of Health and Human Service’s Health Resources and Services Administration. She administered grants for the Community and Migrant Health Center Programs and helped develop and implement the Community Access Program. She started working at VAPAHCS in 2003 as a Health System Specialist to the Chief of Staff, and later served as the Staff Assistant to the Director and Director for Clinical Support.

Ms. Dwinell graduated from the University of California at Davis with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physiology and a minor in Japanese. She earned a Master of Health Science degree in Health Policy and Administration from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a graduate of the 2003 Veterans Integrated Service Network (VISN) 21/22 Leadership Development Institute, the 2009 Annenberg Leadership Institute, and 2011 Leadership VA.


Portrait of Lawrence L Leung, M.D.

Lawrence L Leung, M.D. | 650-493-5000

Chief of Staff

Dr. Lawrence L. Leung is the Chief of Staff at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. He was appointed to the position on May 28, 2006.

Dr. Leung is responsible for a complex three-division health care system and seven community-based outpatient clinics (CBOC). In addition, he has a leadership role in promoting the ongoing collaboration in research, clinical care, and graduate medical education with the health care system's educational affiliate Stanford University School of Medicine.

Born and raised in Hong Kong, Dr. Leung received his M.D. in 1975 from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He completed his medical residency and obtained his hematology-oncology fellowship training at Cornell-New York Hospital.

In 2002, he was promoted to Professor of Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine and served as Chief of the Division of Hematology from 1995 until February 2004, when he assumed the position of Chief of Medical Service at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. In 2004, he was awarded the Maureen Lyles D'Ambrogio endowed professorship in the Stanford School of Medicine. In addition to being Chief of Staff, he serves as Senior Associate Dean for Veterans Affairs at Stanford University School of Medicine.

Dr. Leung's clinical interest is in bleeding and thrombotic disorders. His research focuses on blood clotting factors and their roles in thrombosis, inflammation and immunity, and the emerging field of personalized genomic medicine. Dr. Leung is a member of the Association of American Physicians, American Society for Clinical Investigation, American Society of Hematology, and the American Heart Association. He has served on study sections of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Hematology Subspecialty Board of the American Board of Internal Medicine. He has been recognized as one of America's Top Doctors every year since 2001, and is an Editor-in-Chief for Hematology in UpToDate.


Portrait of Stephen C Ezeji-Okoye, M.D.

Stephen C Ezeji-Okoye, M.D. | 650-493-5000

Deputy Chief of Staff

Dr. Stephen Ezeji-Okoye was appointed as Deputy Chief of Staff, VA Palo Alto Health Care System in January 2006. Dr. Ezeji-Okoye is responsible for the clinical operations of a complex three division health care system and six community based outpatient clinics (CBOCs). Palo Alto Division provides inpatient acute medical/surgical, psychiatric and rehabilitation services as well as outpatient treatment; Menlo Park Division provides inpatient and outpatient services in acute and chronic psychiatry, drug and alcohol rehabilitation, post-traumatic stress disorder, homeless rehabilitation, and extended care; Livermore Division provides ambulatory care and sub-acute and long term inpatient care. The CBOCs are located in Stockton, Modesto, Monterey, Capitola, Sonora, and San Jose.

Dr. Ezeji-Okoye began his VA career in 1992 at VAPAHCS where he was appointed as Director of Emergency Services. Since that time, he has held a variety of positions, including Acting Chief of Staff of General Internal Medicine, Acting Associate Chief of Staff for Ambulatory Care, Deputy Chief of Staff for San Jose and Monterey Clinics, Associate Chief of the Medical Service, and Acting Chief of Staff. He has also served as the Acting Chief Officer for VISN 21.

Dr. Ezeji-Okoye received his undergraduate education at Harvard College. He graduated magna cum laude with an A.B. in Anthropology. Dr. Ezeji-Okoye received his medical degree from the University of Texas-Houston. Dr. Ezeji-Okoye completed an Internship, Residency, and Chief Residency in Internal Medicine at Stanford Hospital.


Portrait of Michelle R Mountfort

Michelle R Mountfort | 650.493.5000

Deputy Associate Director

Michelle Mountfort is the Deputy Associate Director for Patient Care and Nursing Services at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. She was appointed to the position July 2016. As a member of the VA Palo Alto Health Care System executive team, Ms. Mountfort is responsible for collaborative management discussions, decisions, and policy making for the patient care and nursing service line, as well as clinical patient care services operations and outcomes.
Prior to becoming a nurse, Ms. Mountfort worked in pre-hospital emergency medicine as a paramedic. She holds an undergraduate degree in Psychology with a minor in Biology from Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction, Colorado. She attended a Paramedic-to-RN program and received her Associate Degree in Nursing from Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Florida in 2000. She completed her Master’s in Nursing and Master’s in Business Administration/Healthcare in 2008 from the University of Phoenix. Ms. Mountfort is currently completing her Doctorate in Health Administration.
Ms. Mountfort began her VA career as the Assistant Nurse Manager at the Montrose CBOC in Montrose, Colorado. She then became the Associate Chief Nurse for Ambulatory Care, then Deputy Associate Director for Patient Care Services at the Grand Junction Veterans Health Care System. She then served for one year as the Acting Associate Director for Patient Care Services in Grand Junction, Colorado.
Ms. Mountfort is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International. She has served on various VISN and National committees and workgroups. She is a graduate of the 2010 VA (VISN 18/19) Leadership Development Institute and the 2015 Federal Executive Institute. She is a certified VA mentor and has special interest in psychological safety, resiliency, and staff empowerment.