About Us

Who we are

Established in July 2001, CNYAHEC is a non-profit 501(c)(3) community-based organization working to improve health care access, delivery, and outcomes in a 14-county region of Central New York.

The CNYAHEC service area is home to 24 hospitals located in predominantly rural areas serving a total regional population of over 1.62 million people. There are numerous geographic pockets of federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) and Medically Underserved Areas (MUAs) within the CNYAHEC region, specifically in the areas of primary health care, mental health care, and dental health care.

The mission of CNYAHEC was adopted in June 2002 and reads as follows:
CNYAHEC, through collaborative efforts, improves access to quality health care by promoting improvements in the supply, training, development and distribution of health professionals in a 14-county area.

Strategic planning is guided by the mission and allows CNYAHEC to focus its efforts in four priority areas:

  1. Health careers exploration
  2. Continuing education programs and services
  3. Clinical training opportunities
  4. Community partnership development

Our Region

Located in Cortland, New York, the CNYAHEC office is found in the heart of its service area and central to the counties it serves. The CNYAHEC 14-county regional service area includes Broome, Cayuga, Chemung, Chenango, Cortland, Herkimer, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, Schuyler, Seneca, Tioga, and Tompkins counties.

Our Staff

Richard Merchant

Ashleigh McGowan
HWNY VP of Strategy & Operations
amcgowan@cnyahec.org / 607.423.9199

Lauren Anderson
CNYAHEC Center Director
lauren@hwny.org / 609.529.8870

Christen Aldrich
Administration and Communications Manager
christen@hwapps.org / 530.680.5501

Christina DeLorenzo
HWNY Director of Administration and Finances
cdelorenzo@nahecnet.org / 315.379.7701

Whitney Callaghan
NAHEC Center Director
whitney@nahecnet.org / 315.323.5485

Kris Merchant 
HWNY Director of Projects and AHEC SET Program Coordinator
kris@hwapps.org / 315.212.7517

Ben Aldrich
HWNY Director of Technology and Data Security
ben@hwapps.org / 315.244.7260

Judi Wesser
InService Solutions Specialist
jwesser@cnyahec.org / 607.863.3981

Board Members

Allison A.N. Duggan, M.D., FACS
Clinical Quality Medical Director
Crouse Health

Vice Chair
David W. Felton
President & Chief Executive Officer (Retired)
Crouse Community Center Nursing Facility

Fred Farley, PhD, FACHE, CNAA
Assistant Professor
Mansfield University
Adjunct Professor
Binghamton University


John Sigg, Ph.D.
Associate Dean, School of Health Sciences
& Human Performance
Ithaca College

Dan Young
Senior Business Advisor
Empire Advocates

Gloria E. Meredith, Ph.D.
Founding Dean
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science
Binghamton University

Shari Weiss, Ph.D.
Executive Director
Cayuga Community Health Network







Tricia A. Peter-Clark, FACHE
President/Chief Executive Officer

Tammy L. Austin-Ketch, Ph.D.
Dean, College of Nursing
SUNY Upstate Medical University

Brian Forrest, SPHR
Vice President of Human Resources
Cayuga Medical Center
Cayuga Health System

Kent N. Hall, M.D.
SVP/Chief Physician Executive
Mohawk Valley Health System

Ex-Officio Member
Carrie A. Roseamelia, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean for Rural Medicine and Research Assistant Professor
Dept. of Family Medicine, SUNY Upstate Medical University