Board of Directors
The five publicly elected officials bring a wealth of business experience and expertise, healthcare background, and community involvement to the board.
Les Zendle MD - President - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Elected in 2016
In the past, he has also served on the Board of Directors of AIDS Project Los Angeles, the Board of Trustees of the Union for Reform Judaism, the Occidental College Alumni Board of Governors, the Medicare Coverage Advisory Board for the Center of Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Palm Springs Human Rights Commission and the Palm Springs Task Force on Ethics, Transparency and Government Reform.
Carole Rogers, RN, MPH - Vice President/Secretary
- Elected in November 2014
Carole Rogers RN, MPH, is a licensed registered nurse with more than 40 years of experience in the healthcare field. She was publicly elected twice to four-year terms to the Eden Township Healthcare District (Castro Valley CA) where she served as Director and then Chair of the Board for five years.
She was educated in San Francisco Bay Area schools including San Francisco State University and U.C. Berkeley with a Masters Degree in Public Health. She received a post-graduate fellowship in HMO Management from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Georgetown University.
Carole's first assignment as an independent consultant right out of college was to obtain approval from the Federal government for Contra Costa County Health Services to be licensed as a federally approved HMO, and marketed services to County patients, employees and eventually the community where it still stands as a successful model. (Contra Costa Health Plan.)
Carole had other successful consultant assignments: North East Medical Services, San Francisco (for an HMO license); Bridgeway Plan for Health, San Francisco (for a HMO expansion license); California Academy of Ophthalmologists, San Francisco (for a national stand alone Vision Plan): Readicare, Sunnyvale (for a WCHPO – Workers Compensation Healthcare Organization license); Alameda Health Systems, Oakland (for a County Sponsored EPO); Alameda-Contra Costa Foundation for Medical Care IPA– Interim Executive Director; Camino Real Medical Group, San Mateo CA. She taught HMO Management as an instructor – UC Berkeley Extension.
Carole's employment history includes: Executive Director, Mercy Health Plan – Mercy Medical Center, San Diego; Director of Health Financing Systems, Seton Medical Center, Pacifica; Executive Director, Contra Costa Health Providers, Walnut Creek; Executive Director, Diablo Valley IPA/PPO, Concord; Executive Director, Contra Costa Health Plan, Martinez;
As a registered nurse, Carole was employed for the past 12 years with Alameda Health Systems, Oakland, CA, Oncology-Hematology Dept.; San Leandro Hospital, San Leandro, CA, Transitional Care Unit; and Med-Staff Nurses Registry, Oakland.
Carole's volunteer work includes the Davis Street Family Resource Center, San Leandro, volunteer nurse, Rotacare Free Clinic; Volunteer Nurse, Houston Astrodome, Charge Nurse – Triage, Hurricane Katrina Victims; Zimbabwe Rotary Health Project team leader for a large medical team of primary care physicians, dentists, surgeons, optometrists, nurses and ancillary staff for a three-year Rotary 3H grant; Water Wells for Ghana – awarded a three-year- 3H grant to drill 80 water wells in the Ho District of Ghana Africa. Team Leader; and Guatemala Village Bank and Medical-Dental grant from Rotary Foundation, team leader.
Carole holds a lifetime Community College teaching credential, Certificates in Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Oncology Infusion Therapy, and Post Operative Recovery. She has an AED (Automatic Electronic Defibrillator) in the back seat of her car.
Mark Matthews - Treasurer - email@example.com
- Appointed in Lieu of Election November 2000
- Appointed In Lieu of Election December 2004
- Elected in November 2012
- Elected in November 2016
Mark Matthews owns Wiefels and Sons Funeral Directors and manages several facilities in the desert and neighboring communities. He served Desert Hospital/ Desert Regional Medical Center in various capacities since 1988, including participation at the board level, and was instrumental in negotiating the lease of the hospital to Tenet Health System in 1997. Mr. Matthews was a long-time board member of the Association of California Healthcare Districts. In our local area, he is a member of the City of Palm Springs Planning Commission, Past President of Mizell Senior Center, and has served as a board member of several other key organizations in the valley.
Kay Hazen -Director - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Appointed January 2001
- Elected in November 2002
- Appointed In Lieu of Election December 2010
- Elected in November 2014
Kay Hazen owns and operates a Palm Springs-based public and government affairs consulting practice. She previously spent over 20 years working in a wide variety of healthcare settings including serving as a vice president at Desert Hospital (now Desert Regional Medical Center). A long-time active, local community volunteer, Kay has served as President of the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Palm Springs International Film Festival, and President of the American Heart Association Desert Division. She currently serves on the board of the Friends of the Desert Mountains, Agua Caliente Development Authority and Braille Institute Associates.
Jennifer Wortham, Dr.Ph - Director - email@example.com
- Elected in 2016
Jennifer Wortham, Dr.PH, currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer for University Preferred Health Partners. She has served as a healthcare executive and consultant for over 25 years, implementing quality improvement programs for several world-class health care delivery systems including the University of California San Diego, Health System; The UCLA, Ashe Student Health and Wellness Center; and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. She served as the Vice President, Transformation for Eisenhower Medical Center; President, Institute for Performance Excellence, a division of the Hospital Association of Southern California; National Director, Transformation and Program Management Capability Development for Kaiser Permanente; and Administrative Director for Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Dr. Wortham holds an MPH and a Dr.PH in Health Services Administration from UCLA. She teaches courses at the UCLA, School of Public Health, and lectures through trade and professional associations. Dr. Wortham specializes in Lean, a management approach based on lessons learned from Toyota that helps organizations deliver higher quality products and services, and she is currently managing a multi-site study with the Hospital Association of Southern California’s, Nursing Advisory Council focused on improving nursing workflow in hospitals in Southern California. Dr. Wortham serves on the Board of Directors of Habitat for Humanity of the Coachella Valley, leading the organization's strategic planning.
New Leadership Keeps the Focus on Transformation and Expansion
COACHELLA VALLEY – January 4, 2018 – The New Year promises to be one of continuing transformation as Desert Healthcare District/Foundation Board Member Les Zendle, MD, takes the helm as president. “As I enter my second year on the Board, I am thrilled to lead the charge for the organization with a focus on services, programs and facilities, especially centered on behavioral health, and the proposed expansion of the District to encompass the East Valley,” said Zendle, adding, “Expanding access for all of our residents under our One Coachella Valley approach is essential.” (COMPLETE NEWS RELEASE)