Press Release

Robin Lake to Chair Association's Small or Rural Hospitals Governing Council

Robin Lake, president and CEO of North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in Harrison, Ark., will lead the American Hospital Association's (AHA) Section for Small or Rural Hospitals in 2010.  The 21-person governing council represents small or rural hospitals in the AHA's policy process and member services initiatives.

Lake just recently joined North Arkansas Regional Medical Center, a 175-bed full-service hospital serving the 13,000 residents living in Harrison.  The medical center provides a wide array of services for the community including cancer services, rehabilitation services and home health services.  Prior to joining North Arkansas Regional Medical Center, Lake served as CEO for 60-bed Great Plains Regional Medical Center in Elk City, Okla. In this role, Lake dramatically improved the hospital's finances within eight years and gained national recognition for the turnaround. In addition, he oversaw a $60 million facility upgrade and implemented various programs to better serve the community's health needs.

Lake has served on the AHA's Small and Rural Hospitals Governing Council since 2006.  He is currently a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and serves on the Oklahoma Hospital Association Board of Directors. He received the Oklahoma Rural CEO of the Year award in 2007 and the Oklahoma Hospital Association Advocacy in Action award in 2003. Lake earned a bachelor's degree in science business administration and a master's degree in business administration from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.

Mark Doak, CEO of Davis Health System in Elkins, W.V., is the 2011 chair-elect.  Edward J. Hannon, CEO of The McDowell Hospital in Marion, N.C., is immediate past chair.

The Section's governing council advises the AHA on federal policy issues.  Elected members serve three-year terms.  New members include:  Denver Talley, trustee representative, Grady Memorial Hospital, Chickasha, Okla.; Michael J. Ryan, president and CEO, Hillsboro Community Hospital, Hillsboro, Kan.; Paul R. Bengtson, CEO, Northeastern Vermont Regional, Saint Johnsbury, Vt.; Rodney Nelson, president and CEO, Mackinac Straits Hospital and Health Center, Saint Ignace, Mich.; and James A. Buckner, administrator, Uvalde Memorial Hospital, Uvalde, Texas. Ezra Segura, administrator and CEO, Heber Valley Medical Center, Heber City, Utah, was appointed for a one-year term to complete an unexpired term. In addition, Thomas Bell, president, Kansas Hospital Association, Topeka, Kan., was reappointed as the representative for the State Hospital Association Executives Forum (SHAEF); and Susan Starling, president, Marcum and Wallace Memorial Hospital, Irvine, Ky., was reappointed as the representative from the National Rural Health Association.

The new governing council members join the following current members:  Lynn Beasley, interim CEO, Hendry Regional Medical Center, Clewiston, Fla.; Staci Covey, administrator and CEO, Troy Community Hospital, Troy, Pa.; Harry G. Dorman, III, president and CEO, Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital, Lebanon, N.H.; Susan Lassiter, president, Roanoke-Chowan Hospital, Ahoskie, N.C.; Robert Moser, M.D.,  AAFP representative, Tribune, Kan.; Bernard A. Orman, Jr., administrator and CEO, Samaritan Hospital, Macon, Mo.; John Remillard, president, Aurelia Osborn Fox Memorial Hospital, Oneonta, N.Y.; Alvin Hoover, CEO, King's Daughters Medical Center, Brookhaven, Miss.; Brad Smith, CEO, Rush Memorial Hospital, Rushville, Ind.; Kenneth Cochran, CEO, Cibola General Hospital, Grants, N.M., and Jon Smiley, CEO, Sunnyside Community Hospital, Sunnyside, Wash. Raymond W. Montgomery, president and CEO, White County Medical Center, Searcy, Ark., serves as the AHA board liaison to the section's governing council.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at

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