AAHC & AAHCI Staff

Steven Wartman, MD, PhD

President, CEO
A general internist and sociologist who has spent more than 25 years in academic medicine, Dr. Wartman joined AAHC in 2005. His interests and publications lie in the areas of health care delivery, health policy, medical education and academic leadership. Previous to becoming the 3rd President of the Association of Academic Health Center in July 2005, Dr. Wartman was Executive Vice President for Academic and Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. Click here for Dr. Wartman's complete biosketch.

Lynn Bentley

Communications Coordinator
Lynn Bentley joined AAHC in February 2008. She received her BA in Political Science from American University and brings over 25 years of experience working with international financial and development organizations in Washington, DC.

Ruhiyyih Degeberg

Senior Manager, Member Programs
Ruhiyyih Degeberg joined the AAHC in 2016. She is responsible for planning and coordinating activities, meetings and educational content for member programs. Prior to joining AAHC, she was a senior specialist with the Association of Public Health Laboratories. Ruhiyyih brings to the AAHC more than three years of association experience as well as a background in scientific research, project management and public health. Ruhiyyih holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison as well as a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of Pittsburgh.

Nicholas Diaz

Web Specialist
Nicholas Diaz joined the communications team at AAHC in the fall of 2016. His primary responsibilities include administration of the website, managing the distribution of electronic communications, and working to devise and implement new web features for AAHC and AAHCI members. Nick has more than a decade of web admin and development experience. He studied illustration at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design.

Elizabeth Frank

Project Coordinator, International Programs
Elizabeth Frank joined AAHC in October 2015. Her responsibility is to provide support to International Program member activities: including programs, meetings, communications, and marketing. Elizabeth joined AAHC after spending nearly 10 years in International Development, where she supported education and health programs globally and nationally. Elizabeth received her MS in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University, and her BA in International Development, Political Science, and Spanish from Virginia Wesleyan College.

Elizabeth Bishop Gemoets

Chief Operating Officer
Elizabeth Gemoets joined the AAHC in June of 2006. She is responsible for overseeing the daily operations of the association, staffing the board of directors, and managing the Leadership Institute. In addition, she serves as the Secretary/Treasurer of the organization. Elizabeth has more than 15 years of association management experience, obtained her Bachelor’s in Music and Business from Skidmore College, and did graduate work in non-profit management at American University.

Lisa Harrison

Office Manager
Lisa Harrison joined the AAHC in July of 2009 as Receptionist/Office Coordinator. She is the voice of AAHC and brings extensive organization and office support expertise to the organization. Prior to working at the AAHC, she worked as the assistant to the Director of Aging Services for the United Planning Organization. She is in the process of earning her BS degree in Business Administration, and plans to continue her education towards an MBA.

Oksana Iudenkova

Project Coordinator, Member Programs
Oksana Iudenkova joined AAHC in November 2015. She is responsible for supporting AAHC programs and initiatives, including executive leadership groups, meetings, webinars, marketing, and social media. Prior to joining AAHC, she was a membership coordinator at the American Academy of Otoloryngic Allergy. Oksana graduated with a BS in Psychology from National Aviation University in Kiev, Ukraine.

Anthony J. Knettel, JD

Senior Director for Policy and Strategy
Anthony J. Knettel joined AAHC in 2007 following three years service as a Division Director and Acting Deputy Group Director in the Center for Beneficiary Choices (CBC), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), helping launch the Medicare Part D prescription drug program. He previously served as U.S. House and Senate Committee professional staff, as a legislative and regulatory analyst for the U.S. Department of Labor, and as the senior health policy manager for a trade association.

Yuan Li

Database and Technology Specialist
Yuan joined AAHC in 2016. His responsibilities include the management of membership database records, online user profiles, and providing IT related customer service to staff and members. He is a recent graduate at the University of Maryland with experience in database administration, web development, photography, graphics design, and various computer based languages.

Sally Maloney

Executive Assistant to the President and Chief Operating Officer
Sally Maloney joined the AAHC staff in February 2011. A native of Washington, DC, she brings over 25 years of association experience from her previous position. Sally attended the University of Houston prior to moving back to the area. She has also worked at the Washington Post and on Capitol Hill. Her expertise in administrative and organizational work includes working with boards of directors, staffing executive offices, and running meetings and conventions.

Alcenia McIntosh-Peters

Director of Meetings and Membership
Alcenia McIntosh-Peters joined the AAHC in February 2007 as Executive Assistant to the President. She brings extensive administrative management expertise in for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. Alcenia received her Bachelor's in Business Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Certificate in Paralegal Studies from Georgetown University.

Angela Mills, MA

Director of Communications
Angela Mills joined AAHC in 2012 and is responsible for strategic communications for both internal and external constituencies. A marketing communication professional with more than 12 years experience, Angela has worked with non-profit, government, and commercial entities. She has a BSB in Marketing from the University of Minnesota and an MA in Communication with an emphasis in health from Johns Hopkins University.

Yvette Odu

Research Analyst/ Project Manager
Yvette Odu joined the AAHC in August of 2015. She works on data analysis and data visualization in the research arm of AAHC. Prior to joining AAHC, she was a research assistant at the Urban Institute in the Health Policy Center. Yvette has a background in health systems strategy and public health. Yvette hold a Bachelor’s Degree in Global Affairs and International Development from Yale University and is currently working on Master’s Degree in Applied Economics at Johns Hopkins University.

Chris Kahler Smith, MS

Director of International Programs
Chris Kahler joined AAHC in June of 2012. Her main responsibility at AAHC is to build upon the foundation of AAHC International by managing international membership and programs, and creating a more solid governance and membership structure. Chris joined the AAHC after working for the US-China Business Council, where she supported American companies in the health industries with their business operations in China. Chris received her MS in Global Affairs from New York University, and her BA in International Development and Chinese from The George Washington University.

Kristen Verderame

Director of Government Relations
Kristen Verderame joined AAHC in September of 2014 as Director of Government Relations. Kristen spearheads the Association’s efforts in front of Congress and Executive Branch agencies, promoting the voices and views of our members with the highest level of policy makers in Washington. Kristen has spent the last fifteen years working in government relations and public affairs, representing Fortune 100 companies and organizations from a number of industry sectors. Kristen has her J.D. from the University of Michigan and her B.A. in Political Science from Albion College.