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Statement on Diversity and Inclusion

ACHE of Massachusetts embraces diversity within the healthcare management field and recognizes that priority as both an ethical and business imperative. ACHE of Massachusetts values diversity and initiatives that promote diversity because they can improve the quality of the organization’s workforce. ACHE of Massachusetts also values and actively promotes diversity in its leaders and members because diverse participation can serve as a catalyst for improved decision making, increased productivity, and a competitive advantage.

Congratulations to the
Diversity & Inclusion Committee
for their achievements!

Karen O. Moore RN, MS, FACHE Massachusetts Regent nominated the Massachusetts chapter for the Regents-at-Large Award for the chapter's work in Diversity & Inclusion. The Massachusetts chapter was presented the award at ACHE’s annual chapter leader's conference in Chicago on September 24th. Shown in the picture are: Joanne Carrocino, FACHE President & CEO, Cape Regional Health System, Carmen Kenrich, Chair of the Massachusetts Chapter Diversity & Inclusion Committee and Heather Rohan, FACHE, HCA TriStar Division President and Chairman of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

Diversity & Inclusion conference held at Baystate Health on September 25, 2019. Thank you to our D&I ACHE of MA committee member Carla Villacorta (2nd from left) for moderating this event.

Further, ACHE of Massachusetts works to foster an inclusive environment that recognizes the contributions and supports the advancement of all, regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, religion, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability because an inclusive environment accurately represents the populations we serve, can enhance the quality of healthcare, improve hospital/community relations, and positively affect the health status of society. This priority is reflected in the chapters various activities and initiatives.

ACHE of Massachusetts is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion through the following activities:

Within the Chapter organization:

  • The Chapter Nominating Committee is charged with assuring that the chapter board of directors is broadly representative of the chapter membership and with maintaining a diverse and inclusive chapter leadership.

Within the healthcare management field:

  • Strive to conduct at least one chapter educational event per year involving the topic of diversity and inclusion
  • Feature the topic of diversity and inclusion each year in Chapter communications, either a Chapter Newsletter or other e-mail communication
  • Develop a relationship within minority healthcare associations locally.
  • Develop and maintain a caucus organization within the chapter in collaboration with the Asian Healthcare Leaders Association and/or the National Forum of Latino Healthcare Executives.

The Diversity and Inclusion Committee will highlight monthly healthcare organizations who are striving to make a difference impacting the community while embracing their commitment to Diversity and Inclusion initiatives.

Beyond Compliance - Spaulding Rehabilitation Network

Spaulding Rehabilitation Network is focused on empowering our patients return to their fullest possible lives following life-changing illness or injury. In addition to our premier clinical care and research, Spaulding’s advocacy for people with disabilities through adaptive sports, employment, accessibility, legislation and beyond moves us all forward.

Spaulding is a vibrant hub for patients and their families as well as for the disability community who are looking for a place to connect around common experiences and their individual journeys. It is here where people find their strength. Healing goes beyond physical to include confidence, spirit, camaraderie and engagement. Read more

Soraya Kanakis, Graduate Student Harvard University Extension School & Northeastern University and a member of the D&I ACHE of MA committee shared with us her personal experience. Soraya learned that Autism runs in the family as her cousin's son has it as does her youngest son. One of her mentors, Dr. Ronald Shorr, MD, PhD told her that his daughter also has autism and lives in the Boston area as well. Soraya's youngest son is now an adult with disabilities and it wasn't until he was able to get into the Lurie Center here in Lexington, MA along with ASPIRE that he began to improve. ASPIRE helped him to complete his first summer internship at a health care facility in Newton and he learned data entry. ASPIRE helped him to gain more confidence in his abilities and to help him learn that he does have a place in society and that he can contribute.

But now he is doing incredibly well, earned a scholarship to take piano lessons on weekends at Berklee College of Music, is working on his second Master degree through the online program at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and completed his first summer internship program through ASPIRE.

Soraya’s Interview with Leslie O'Brien, LICSW, Program Manager, Aspire Works, Massachusetts General Hospital

MGH Aspire Works began at Camp Bunker Hill through MGH for special needs kids and then focused later on Autism. The camp was so popular that it started year-round with teen programming and adults transitioning into the workplace. Leslie shared with me that the MGH Aspire Works internship program was created about six years ago to support young adults capable of being independent in the workplace without an on-site job coach, but still in need of a supportive employment program.

Read more

Diversity and Inclusion Committee

Busayo Ajayi
Director, Workforce Development, Diversity and Inclusion           
Boston Medical Center

Scott Ariel - Co-Chair
Executive Director 
Hebrew Rehabilitation Center at NewBridge on the Charles

Frantz Berthaud                     
Administrative Director, Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology       
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Dee Dee Chen
Director of Professional Staff Compensation and Benefits
Massachusetts General Hospital

Soraya Kanakis
Graduate Student
Harvard University Extension School & MCPHS

Kerri-Lynne Kellam, MPH
Ambulatory Care Operations Director-Group Practice Manager
Department of Veteran Affairs

Carmen Kenrich - Chair
Vice President Business Development
Leaders For Today

Linda Leung 
Consultant-Aurora Behavioral Healthcare
Chicago Lakeshore Hospital

Bhargav Makadia
Graduate Student
Boston University

Karen Moore, RN, FACHE
Senior Vice President of Operations & Chief Nursing Officer
Lawrence General Hospital

Senior Administrative Director
Massachusetts General Hospital

Yemisi Oloruntola-Coates, MA, MAMC
Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer
Baystate Health

Alex Schwarzer, MBA, MPH
Division Manager
Children’s Hospital Boston

Basel Tarab, MD
Patient Relations Specialist
Boston Children’s Hospital

Carla Villacorta
ALPFA Healthcare Advisor
ALPFA Boston

LGBT Leaders

Joseph Castellana, Ph.D.

Daniel Abeyta
Physician Access Analyst
Steward Health System

List of Cultural Holidays


November is National Native American Heritage Month, which celebrates the history and contributions of Native Americans.

November 1:All Saints’ Day, a Christian holiday commemorating all known and unknown Christian saints. (In Eastern Christianity, the day is observed on the first Sunday after Pentecost.)

November 2: All Souls’ Day, a Christian holiday commemorating all faithful Christians who are now dead. In the Mexican tradition, the holiday is celebrated as Dia de los Muertos (October 31- November 2), which is a time of remembrance for dead ancestors and a celebration of the continuity of life.

November 9-10 (sundown to sundown): Eid Milad un-Nabi, an Islamic holiday commemorating the birthday of the prophet Muhammad. During this celebration, homes and mosques are decorated, large parades take place, and those observing the holiday participate in charity events.

November 10: Mawlid an Nabi, observance of the birthday of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, which is commemorated in Rabi' al-awwal.

November 11: Veterans Day, a U.S. federal holiday honoring military veterans. The date is also celebrated as Armistice Day, or Remembrance Day, in other parts of the world and commemorates the ending of the World War I in 1918.

November 14-December 24: Nativity Fast, a period of abstinence and penance practiced by the Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Catholic churches in preparation for the Nativity of Jesus.

November 20: Transgender Day of Remembrance, established in 1998 to memorialize those who have been killed as a result of transphobia and to raise awareness of the continued violence endured by the transgender community.

November 24: Feast of Christ the King, a Catholic holiday established in thanking God for the gift of time and a rededication to the Christian faith.

November 28: Thanksgiving in the United States the United States. It began as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year.

November 30-December 3: St. Andrew’s Day, the feast day for St. Andrew within various Christian denominations.


December 1: World AIDS Day, commemorating those who have died of AIDS, and to acknowledge the need for a continued commitment to all those affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

December 1-24: Advent, a Christian season of celebration leading up to the birth of Christ.

December 3: International Day of Disabled Persons, designed to raise awareness in regards to persons with disabilities in order to improve their lives and provide them with equal opportunity.

December 8: Immaculate Conception of Mary, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception celebrates the solemn celebration, by various Christian denominations, of belief in the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

December 10: International Human Rights Day, established by the United Nations in 1948 to commemorate the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

December 12: Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a religious holiday in Mexico commemorating the appearance of the Virgin Mary near Mexico City in 1531.

December 13: St. Lucia’s Day, a religious festival of light in Scandinavia and Italy commemorating the martyrdom of St. Lucia, a young Christian girl who was killed for her faith in 304 C.E. She secretly brought food to persecuted Christians in Rome while wearing a wreath of candles on her head so both her hands would be free.

December 16-24: Las Posadas, a nine-day celebration in Mexico commemorating the trials Mary and Joseph endured during their journey to Bethlehem.

December 21: Yule Winter Solstice, celebrated by Pagans and Wiccans. The shortest day of the year represents a celebration focusing on rebirth, renewal and new beginnings as the sun makes its way back to the Earth. A solstice is an astronomical event that happens twice each year when the sun reaches its highest position in the sky.

December 22-30: Hanukkah, a Jewish holiday that is celebrated around the world for eight days and nights. Hanukkah celebrates the victory of the Maccabees, or Israelites, over the Greek-Syrian ruler, Antiochus, approximately 2,200 years ago.

December 25: Christmas Day, the day that many Christians associate with Jesus’ birth.

December 26: Boxing Day, a secular holiday celebrated in the U.K., Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and South Africa.

December 26-January 1: Kwanzaa, an African-American holiday started by Maulana Karenga in 1966 to celebrate universal African-American heritage.

December 26: Zartosht No-Diso (Death of Prophet Zarathushtra), a day of remembrance in the Zoroastrian religion. It is a commemoration of the death anniversary of the prophet Zoroaster, or Zarathushtra.

December 26: St. Stephen’s Day, a day to commemorate St. Stephen, the first Christian martyr, or protomartyr.

December 27: St. John’s Day, Apostle and Evangelist, feast day for St. John celebrated by Christian denominations.

December 28: Feast of the Holy Innocents, a Christian feast in remembrance of the massacre of young children in Bethlehem by King Herod the Great in his attempt to kill the infant Jesus.

December 29: Feast of the Holy Family, a liturgical celebration in the Catholic Church in honor of Jesus, his mother and his foster father, St. Joseph as a family. The primary purpose of this feast is to present the Holy Family as a model for Christian families.

December 31: Watch Night, a day for Christians to review the year that has passed, make confessions, and then prepare for the year ahead by praying and resolving.