Leadership Goals

At Connecticut Children’s, One Team means everyone matters. With our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Declaration, our organization’s journey is to foster a more welcoming and inclusive culture by working together to address racism, discrimination and bias, and advance equity. We all work together to achieve one mission, which also means that taking care of our patients begins by taking care of each other. As an integral part of our strategy, we focus on cultivating a culture of kindness for both our employees and patients.

We are transforming the way we work to improve the team member experience as well as our patient experience and outcomes. In doing so, we’re offering better support to our patient families. Connecticut Children’s is committed to partnering with patients, families, and communities using evidence-based models resulting in zero-harm, highest quality, world-class outcomes in a culture based on equity, continual improvement, and compassionate care.

Executive Management Team

James E. Shmerling is the President and Chief Executive Officer at Connecticut Children’s, a nationally recognized leader for driving innovation in pediatrics and cutting-edge pediatric research. For over four decades, Dr. Shmerling has served in management roles in children’s hospitals, devoting his career to advocating for children and healthy communities. Dr. Shmerling is a nationally recognized leader in issues concerning children’s health and wellness and most recently was identified in Hartford Business Journal’s Power 25 in Health Care.

Prior to joining Connecticut Children’s in October of 2015, Dr. Shmerling served as the Chief Executive Officer of Children’s Hospital Colorado, one of the top ranked children’s hospitals in the nation. Earlier in his career, he served in various leadership roles at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Le Bonheur Children’s Medical Center, Indiana University Hospitals, James Whitcomb Riley Hospital for Children and the Children’s Hospital of Alabama, where Dr. Shmerling’s career in children’s hospitals began.

He earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Health Education from the University of Tennessee in 1976. In 1980, he was awarded a Master of Science Degree in Hospital and Health Administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He earned a Master of Business Administration from Samford University in 1984 and his Doctorate of Health Administration from the Medical University of South Carolina in 1999.

Dr. Shmerling is a Fellow in the American College of Health Care Executives (ACHE) and is an adjunct faculty member in the Hospital Administration programs at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In addition to his professional accomplishments, Dr. Shmerling currently serves as a member on the Pediatric Home Services Board of Directors, Biostage, Inc. Board of Directors, Abe’s Garden Board of Directors, and the Hartford Board of Education. He is active in several national healthcare organizations including the Children’s Hospital Association and Connecticut Hospital Association.

Dr. Shmerling is a native of Nashville, Tennessee and is married to his wife of 43 years, Debbie Shmerling. He and Debbie have four children and eight grandchildren.
 

Bill Agostinucci is Vice President of Corporate Services where he has responsibilities for Pharmacy, Facilities, Safety and Security, Environmental and Food Service and Supply Chain. He graduated from UCONN School of Pharmacy in 1980 and then completed a Pharmacy Residency at Moses Cone Memorial Hospital in Greensboro, NC. Bill worked at Hartford Hospital for thirteen years, specializing in Pain Management and Pharmacy Oncology Services. In 1996, he became the Assistant Director of Pharmacy and helped to open Connecticut Children’s Pharmacy Services. In 1998, he became Director of Clinical Support Services at Connecticut Children’s and has worked to develop systems and technology enhancements as well as increase the access to care over his tenure. Many programs have expanded and added new services, improving the care provided. The hospital has added new Sleep and Neuro-diagnostic Services, advanced Radiology capabilities and Sports Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy services during his tenure. In addition, the 340B Pharmacy program has been established that advantages the hospital financially.

Bill is currently involved in improving the use of space at the hospital as well as developing a master facilities space program that will help support the organization’s future vision and patient care needs. In addition, satellite locations are beginning to flourish and the expansion of areas like Infusion, Dialysis, Pharmacy, and Ambulatory Care have been completed or are underway. Bill is involved in supporting the new ERP Program as well. The major program to be completed is the expansion of the hospital to add a new tower and additional clinical and support services.

Bill also has achieved a Masters in Healthcare Management from the Hartford Graduate Center and he received the Pharmacist of the Year Award from the Connecticut Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists where he also served as President. He has been a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives for the past 12 years.
 

Ryan Calhoun joined Connecticut Children’s in 2017 and is responsible for leading strategic planning, care coordination operations, value based care, population health and physician alignment initiatives for the health system. He is one of the leaders of the Center for Well-Being and Care Integration

Prior to joining Connecticut Children’s, Ryan spent three years at Children’s Hospital Colorado, one of the top ranked children’s hospitals in the nation. Ryan completed his administrative fellowship at the hospital and then became a strategy and planning consultant. Prior to joining Children’s Hospital Colorado, Ryan worked as the Manager of Product Development and Implementation at Citra Health Solutions, a healthcare service and technology company that supports accountable care organizations (ACOs). During his tenure, Ryan oversaw the managed care programs for multiple ACO clients.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University. He served as broadcast journalist for four years before returning to school to earn his Master of Business Administration and Master of Healthcare Administration from the University of North Florida.
 

Jonathan M. Carroll joined Connecticut Children’s in 2023 with a wealth of experience and expertise in the field of information technology and in the healthcare sector.

Carroll has an impressive track record of leading major technical transformations in his previous roles as CIO at Fairfield University and at UConn Health. He brings valuable insights into managing and unifying complex IT environments, as well as executing transformative IT and cybersecurity strategies.

During his recent tenure at Fairfield University, Carroll's most notable achievement was the successful implementation of Workday HCM, Payroll and Finance, which streamlined integrated business processes and reduced institutional silos. His ability to manage IT infrastructure for new construction and ongoing renovations demonstrates his commitment to providing state-of-the-art technology to support healthcare and education.

Carroll's experience in campus expansion projects, cost containment efforts, and commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion all align with Connecticut Children’s core values and strategic priorities.

Carroll received his Bachelor of Science in information systems from Fairfield University and earned his MBA from Quinnipiac University.

Bob Duncan joined Connecticut Children’s in 2022 with over two decades of leadership experience in strategic planning, performance improvement and business development at large healthcare systems.

At Connecticut Children’s, he helps execute the health system’s new five-year strategic plan which includes the ground breaking and construction of a new 225,000 square foot inpatient hospital tower.

Duncan last led operation efforts at Children’s Wisconsin, where he served as the executive vice president of the hospital and president of Children’s Community Health Plan, a $450+ million insurance company that provides Medicaid, private market health plans and special population health plans to children in Wisconsin. Prior to this role, he served as the Director of the Governor’s Office of Children’s Care Coordination for the State of Tennessee. At this time he also was the Director for CoverKids, Tennessee’s children’s health insurance program that provides free, comprehensive health coverage for qualifying children 18 and younger.

Duncan received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Memphis and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Tennessee at Martin. He also completed the Johnson & Johnson/UCLA Health Care Executive Program at UCLA.

Paul Dworkin, MD, is Executive Vice President of Community Child Health and professor of pediatrics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.

Dr. Dworkin was the 2003 recipient of the C. Anderson Aldrich Award, given by the American Academy of Pediatrics’ section of developmental pediatrics. Past winners of this award for work in childhood development include Dr. Benjamin Spock and Dr. T. Berry Brazelton. Dr. Dworkin is a member of numerous professional societies including the Academic Pediatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. He was the editor of the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics from 1997-2002. He serves on the board of directors for several organizations, including the Urban League of Greater Hartford, and is a member of the first entering class of the Academy of Distinguished Educators at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine

Dr. Dworkin received his bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University and his medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He completed a pediatric residency and fellowship in ambulatory pediatrics at Children’s Hospital Boston, with a special emphasis on developmental and behavioral issues.
 

Matthew Farr is the Vice President of Ambulatory Operations for Connecticut Children’s Specialty Group. In this role, Matt is responsible for the successful operations of Connecticut Children’s ambulatory network to ensure safe and efficient patient care. Matt joins Connecticut Children’s with over twenty-five years of progressive administrative experience within ambulatory care operations, home care, and rehabilitation. Prior to joining Connecticut Children’s, Matt was employed by Trinity Health of New England as the Regional Director for the Mandell MS Centers and most recently as the Business Operations Administrator for the Neuroscience service line. Prior to his roles at Trinity Health, Matt was employed as a rehabilitation director and manager in both homecare and outpatient rehabilitation settings. Matt graduated from the University of Scranton with B.S. in physical therapy and the University of Connecticut with a M.S. in Health Administration. In addition, Matt is certified as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.

Bridgett Feagin has more than two decades worth of financial experience under her belt. She has a proven track record of successfully managing the financial operations of highly complex matrix healthcare organizations.

In her current position as Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer (CFO) of Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, Ms. Feagin is responsible for providing financial leadership and strategic guidance throughout the organization.

Prior to her current role, Ms. Feagin held the position of CFO at Tenet Healthcare/Detroit Medical Center (DMC) Adult Central Campus (Detroit Receiving, Harper University and Hutzel Women’s Hospitals). Ms. Feagin provided oversight of finance, revenue cycle, supply chain, medical records, revenue integrity, clinical resource management and physician advisors. Ms. Feagin also held the CFO role at United Way for Southeastern Michigan (UWSEM) in which she managed the financial health of the organization, information technology and facilities administration. Prior to UWSEM, Ms. Feagin spent 20 years serving in various financial leadership roles at the DMC.

Ms. Feagin has received professional accolades: most recently selected as one of Academic Medical Center CFOs to Know (Becker’s Healthcare August 2023), Hospital and Health System CFO’s to Know (Becker’s Healthcare May 2023), Black Healthcare Leaders To Know (Becker’s Healthcare 2022), African American Leaders in Healthcare To Know (Becker’s Healthcare 2020), Alabama State University 50 Under Fifty honorees (Alabama State University 2019), African American Leaders in Healthcare (Becker’s Healthcare 2019), Women of Excellence (Michigan Chronicle 2019) and Notable Women in Finance (Crain’s Detroit 2018).

Ms. Feagin received her Bachelor of Science in Accounting (Alabama State University) and earned a Master of Business Administration in Information Systems Management (Wayne State University). Ms. Feagin professional memberships include Healthcare Financial Management Association, American College of Healthcare Executives, National Association of Health Services Executives and National Black MBA Association. Ms. Feagin has varied board experience. Ms. Feagin current board memberships include New England Pediatrics Indemnity, Connecticut Hospital Association Board Financial Oversight Committee and DNS Board, American School for the Deaf, Neighborhood Housing Services of New Britain and Metro Detroit Basketball Association. Ms. Feagin supports multiple community organizations as well as actively participates with Meals on Wheels.

Christine Finck, MD has served as Chief of the Division of Pediatric Surgery since 2007 and is an associate professor of pediatrics and surgery at UCONN Health. Most recently, she took on the role of Associate Director of Academic Affairs, advocating for various clinical, academic and research efforts across the institution and serving as a mentor to our pediatric research investigators.

Through her own research, Dr. Finck is revolutionizing health outcomes of pediatric and neonatal diseases, most specifically spearheading efforts focused on identifying and treating those that affect the lungs, esophagus and brain. This past May, those innovations were recognized by The Group on Women in Medicine and Science, who awarded Dr. Finck the Outstanding Clinical Scientist Woman Faculty Award.

Dr. Finck received her bachelor’s degree from Boston University and her medical degree from SUNY Upstate Medical University at Syracuse. She completed a surgery residency at SUNY Upstate Medical University at Syracuse and a pediatric surgery fellowship at Arkansas Children’s Hospital.

Paulanne Jushkevich joined Connecticut Children’s in 2023 with over 25 years of experience in professional fundraising–15 years at the executive level– where she led teams of hospital/health science fundraisers through substantial change and significant evolution..

Before joining Connecticut Children’s, Jushkevich spent five years as the Inaugural Associate Vice Chancellor of Advancement for Health Sciences and Research Initiatives at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she drew upon her past experience in healthcare philanthropy to build multiple successful fundraising programs from the ground up. She has dedicated her career to building sustainable, ethical fundraising systems to strengthen and enhance healthcare services, research, education and awareness.

She has previously served as the President of the Royal Victoria Hospital and the Niagara Health Sciences Foundations, and held significant roles at St. Mary’s Hospital and the Jewish General Hospital Foundations. More recently, she served as the National Chief Philanthropy Officer at the Canadian Cancer Society and the National Vice President of Marketing and Philanthropy at Prostate Cancer Canada. In every role, she led fundraising teams and volunteer leaders to achieve enduring impact, while setting a strong track record of raising significant funds through annual and capital campaign programs.

Jushkevich received her Specialized Honors BA from York University, and her MA from McGill University. She has been a Certified Fund Raising Executive since 2004.

Sarah Matney is Senior Vice President, Clinical Services and Chief Nursing Officer. She leads the nursing organization and collaborates with team members to create an environment that hardwires excellent clinical care, access to the appropriate care for all of the children and their families in Connecticut and its surrounding regions, and an environment that all clinicians and team members can find joy in each day. Matney most recently served as Vice President, Ambulatory Operations, building upon her extensive healthcare operations, leadership, patient and family experience, continual improvement, and patient safety and quality experience.

Since joining Connecticut Children’s in 2000, she has served in a variety of nursing and clinical operations positions both at the bedside and in leadership roles, including Practice Administrator for Connecticut Children’s Specialty Group and Business Director of the Cancer and Blood Disorders service line.

Matney graduated from Quinnipiac University School of Business with a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership. She received her Baccalaureate of Science in Nursing degree from Pensacola Christian College. She is certified in Executive Nurse Practice (CENP) as well as a Pediatric Oncology Nurse (CPON©).

Larry Milan is Senior Vice President for human resources at Connecticut Children’s. He was previously senior vice president of human resources – ING Americas of ING North America Insurance Corporation. Milan was responsible for HR consulting, talent management and talent acquisition, leadership and organization development and workforce diversity. Since joining ING in 2000, he served as head of human resources at ING U.S. Financial Services and as vice president of customer service centers for ING U.S.

Milan’s expertise includes significant business, strategic, organizational, and leadership experience gained throughout his tenure at ING and Aetna Financial Services, as well as in assignments with industry leaders such as Pitney Bowes, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and State University of New York (SUNY) Oswego.

He earned an undergraduate degree from Bluffton University, Ohio, and a master’s degree in higher education administration and personnel management/labor relations from Michigan State University. Milan also completed the University of Michigan Executive Management Program. In 2011, he was selected among the “Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America” by Savoy magazine.

James E. Moore M.D., Ph.D., is the President of Connecticut Children’s Specialty Group and of New York Children’s Medical Provider Services. In this role, he works with our teams across more than 40 Connecticut Children’s locations and our care alliance partner organizations across the region. He is also a Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and Connecticut Children’s in Hartford, Connecticut.

He earned his Ph.D. in Neurophysiology, and subsequently his MD degree, both from Emory University in Atlanta, GA. He then completed his pediatric residency training at UT Southwestern and Children’s Medical Center Dallas and finished his Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine fellowship at Boston Children’s in the Harvard School of Medicine combined training program. He is actively involved in education and teaching Neonatology at both the local and national level.

He is the former Ross Mayer Endowed Chair in Neonatology, and he has been awarded the Richard Rivas Memorial Teaching Award, the Founder’s Award from the Southern Society for Pediatric Research, and the Graham’s Foundation Honoree for contributions to Neonatology.

Nicole Murray, MD, is a Pediatric Otolaryngologist at Connecticut Children’s. Dr. Murray is especially interested in neonatal and pediatric airway disorders. She directs the Aerodigestive Center, providing coordinated multidisciplinary care to young patients with complex disorders of the airway, lungs and gastrointestinal systems. Dr. Murray also participates in the Craniofacial Center, responsible for the implementation of cutting-edge technologies for airway and feeding management in newborn patients with abnormalities of the palate and jaws. She has extensive experience, and a keen interest in diseases of the tonsils, adenoids, and ears that occur so commonly in children.

Deb Pappas is vice president, chief marketing and communications officer for Connecticut Children’s. In her role, she’s responsible for leading the development of comprehensive marketing and communications strategies to build Connecticut Children’s brand and reputation, and customer acquisition initiatives in support of the organization’s growth strategy. Pappas oversees digital and content marketing, earned and social media, internal and external communications, and creative services.

Pappas brings a career of marketing and communications experience in both agency and industry sectors, including healthcare, to Connecticut Children’s. Most recently, she served as the Senior Director of Marketing and National Physician Relations for Boston Children’s Hospital. Prior to that she was the Senior Director of Marketing and Communications for UMass Memorial Health Care.

Throughout her career, Pappas has managed corporate and product marketing and communications strategies for a variety of healthcare, technology, financial services and retail brands. Known nationally for her marketing expertise, she has been a featured speaker at conferences across the country.

Pappas earned a BA degree in Psychology from Colby College and an MBA in Marketing from the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business, Babson College.

Dr. Pelletier is Chief Quality and Patient Safety Officer at Connecticut Children’s and The Alexis and William Popik, MD, Quality & Patient Safety Endowed Chair. She is also an Assistant Professor at UMass Medical School in the Division of Health Informatics and Implementation Science in the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences. She completed her PhD in Health Systems Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute focusing on design, systems, processes and statistics. Dr. Pelletier worked for nine years at UMass Memorial Health Care building an organizational capability of improvement and operational excellence through systems design and people development. Prior to her PhD, Dr. Pelletier worked for many years as a Senior Quality Engineer and leader, Lean/Six Sigma Black Belt and ISO Lead Auditor at Solutia, Inc. Dr Pelletier lectures nationally on her current research in suicide prevention, cultural transformation, quality improvement, and the use of electronic health records.

Dr. Salazar is Professor and Chair of Pediatrics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and Executive Vice President and Physician-in-Chief at Connecticut Children’s.

In addition to serving in these roles, Dr. Salazar has led the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology at Connecticut Children’s and has been nationally and internationally recognized for both his outstanding clinical care and his innovative research work. Dr. Salazar has received several National Institutes of Health grants to study the human innate immune response to Borrelia burgdorferi and Treponema pallidum, the causative agents of Lyme disease and syphilis respectively. He is currently funded by the NIH to develop a first of its kind syphilis vaccine. The NIH funded U-19 project includes investigators in China, Malawi, Colombia and the US. Most recently his team received funding from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to study the pathogenesis of COVID-19 and the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), a rare but serious condition associated with COVID-19. He has published over 100 peer reviewed articles and book chapters and has served in multiple scientific review panels at the NIH.

Aimee Monroy Smith is senior vice president for government relations and external affairs at Connecticut Children’s. In her role, Smith builds and maintains Connecticut Children’s relationships with government officials and civic leaders on the federal, state and local levels. She also serves as the organization’s liaison to civic organizations and trade groups in Fairfield County and represents Connecticut Children’s statewide.

Before joining Connecticut Children’s, Smith was the director of government relations for The Jackson Laboratory (JAX) for Genomic Medicine. Prior to joining JAX, Smith worked for Pitney Bowes as the manager of government and regulatory affairs focused on state legislative and global public policy issues. Her previous experience includes advocacy and public affairs positions at the American Cancer Society in Meriden, Eastern Paralyzed Veterans Association in Jackson Heights, N.Y., and the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, Connecticut.

Smith earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Rhode Island, and a master’s degree in public policy from Trinity College in Hartford.

R. Moses Vargas, Esq. is Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer for Connecticut Children’s. In this role, he oversees the Legal, Compliance and Risk Management Departments and provides legal advice and support to the operational departments of Connecticut Children’s, Connecticut Children’s Specialty Group, Inc. and all other CCMC Corporation affiliates.

Prior to joining Connecticut Children’s, Moses worked as a health care transactional/regulatory lawyer for Robinson + Cole, LLP. He has an extensive background in health care law, and has authored several pieces in legal publications focused on HIPAA and patient privacy laws.

Moses is a member of numerous professional organizations including the American Health Lawyers Association, Health Care Compliance Association, Connecticut Lawyers Association, and Health Law Section of Connecticut Bar Association.

Moses obtained his Bachelor’s Degree, Master of Social Work and Master of Business Administration degrees from the University of Utah and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Connecticut School of Law.

CCMC Corporation | Connecticut Children's Medical Center

  • Andrea Balogh
  • Scott Braunstein
  • Tina Brown-Stevenson
  • Christopher Holley
  • Jeffrey Klenk
  • Preston Kodak, III
  • Dorothy A. Levine, MD
  • Burke Magnus
  • Otis Maynard
  • Carlos Mouta
  • Michelle Murphy
  • Jonathan Rubin
  • Tina St. Pierre
  • Jennifer Lindwell Schwab, M.D., FAAP
  • Steven Solecki 

 

  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Nicole Murray, MD President, Medical Staff
  • Shari G. Cantor
  • David Roth
  • Jonathan Rubin Chair
  • Jeffrey Klenk Vice Chair
  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Tina Brown-Stevenson Secretary

Connecticut Children's Foundation, Inc.

  • Geno Auriemma
  • Christine E. Bromberg, Esq.
  • Shari G. Cantor
  • Lauren O. Casazza
  • Jim Fanelli 
  • Michael Fish
  • Louis N. George
  • Karen Hess
  • Andrea Hurley
  • Daryl L. Jackson
  • Joseph K. Labieniec
  • Joyce A. Lagnese, Esq.
  • Russell Lallier 
  • Jane Owen
  • John A. Sodipo
  • Matthew A. Somberg
  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Jonathan Rubin
  • Shari G. Cantor Chair
  • Christine E. Bromberg, Esq. Vice Chair
  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • John A. Sodipo Secretary

Directors Emeritus

Mr. Thomas O. Barnes
Mrs. Eileen Danaher
Mr. James W. Fanelli
Mr. Scott W. Fanning
Mr. Martin J. Gavin
Mr. E. Clayton Gengras, III
Mr. Glen Greenberg
Mrs. Donna Hires
Mr. Jeffrey S. Hoffman
Dr. Cato Laurencin
Mr. Søren Torp Laursen
Mr. Robert Le Blanc
Mr. Edward Lewis 
Mr. H. Mark Lunenburg
Dr. Douglas MacGilpin
Mr. James Manafort
Mrs. Katherine Nixon
Kola Olofinboba, MD
Dr. William Popik
Mr. Robert J. Shanfield
Mr. Charles Shivery
Mr. Lon Smith
Mr. Keith A. Stevenson
Mr. Edward Tonnessen
Mrs. Jessica P. Zachs
Mrs. Lauren Zeligson

CCMC Affiliates and Ventures, Inc.

  • Jonathan Rubin Chair
  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Bridgett Feagin Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer
  • Jonathan Rubin Chair
  • Jeffrey Klenk Vice Chair
  • James Shmerling, DHA, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Tina Brown-Stevenson Secretary