Jay P. Cahalan is President and Chief Executive Officer of Columbia Memorial Health. First joining the organization in 1994 as Chief Operating Officer, he led the development of Columbia Memorial Hospital’s Primary Care and Multi-Specialty Physician Network and was instrumental in transitioning CMH from a Community Hospital to a Health System with locations in three counties. After 18 years as CMH’s Chief Operating Officer, Cahalan was named President/CEO in 2012. Since that time, Columbia Memorial has continued to expand diagnostic and treatment capabilities to Columbia and Greene Counties. In 2016, Cahalan led the organization to a groundbreaking Affiliation with Albany Medical Center. The Affiliation further expanded the scope and breadth of healthcare services to Columbia and Greene Counties as CMH became the first Hospital to partner with Albany Medical Center. Today, the Albany Med Health System includes Saratoga Hospital which joined the System in 2017.
Prior to joining Columbia Memorial Health, Cahalan worked in Connecticut as a clinical instructor of radiologic technology, radiology administrator, and vice president of diagnostic services. Active on numerous Boards, Mr. Cahalan is a Director on the Bank of Greene County Board and also serves on the Boards of the Iroquois Healthcare Alliance, and is currently Treasurer. He holds a Master of Science in Law degree from Champlain College in Vermont, a Master’s Degree from the University of Connecticut, and a Bachelor of Science from Southern Connecticut State University. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri’s, Kansas City, Henry W. Bloch School of Business’ Executive Program in Managed Care. In 2016, Mr. Cahalan retired from the Greene County Rural Health Network Board after serving 17 years, most recently as its President.
Clifford J. Belden, MD
Dr. Belden trained at Albany Medical College and completed a fellowship in neuroradiology at Johns Hopkins Hospital. In addition, Dr. Belden is trained in internal medicine, ophthalmology, and diagnostic radiology, and is board certified in radiology and neuroradiology.
A former Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army Reserve, Dr. Belden has received numerous honors and awards as a physician, researcher, teacher and leader. He has held leadership appointments at several leading institutions, including: Johns Hopkins University where he served as a radiology instructor; Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center where he served as Chief Clinical Officer; Temple University School of Medicine where he served as Chair of Radiology; University of Texas where he served as adjunct associate professor of radiology; Geisel School of Medicine where he served as associate professor of radiology and neurology; and Albany Medical College where he served as associate professor of radiology. He is also associated with numerous leading professional and clinical organizations.
Bryan Mahoney joined CMH in 2011 as the Controller and was named Chief Financial Officer in 2016.
Bryan came to CMH with 9 years of experience at the accounting firm KPMG. As CFO, Bryan oversees the organization’s revenue cycle, supply chain and information technology needs across several departments.
After earning a degree in accounting from the University of Massachusetts in 2002, Bryan went on to become a certified public accountant and completed a certificate program at The Academy for Healthcare Leadership Advancement at Cornell University in 2015.
Mary Ellen Plass
Mary Ellen Plass, MS, RN, CENP, Vice President Patient & Clinical Services/Chief Nursing Officer joined CMH as Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President of Patient and Clinical Services in December 2016.
Mary Ellen works with a team of managers and directors to oversee nursing and clinical staff at the Hospital, Emergency Department and Care Centers.
Previously, Mary Ellen served as Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President of Patient Care Services at Albany Medical Center from 2005 to 2014. At Albany Med, Mary Ellen oversaw a nursing staff of about 2,900 employees across the Hospital, surgical and emergency services.
Tish Finnegan joined the CMH executive team in 2005 and has nearly 27 years of experience in a variety of roles across the healthcare network.
Today, Tish serves as Vice President of Care Center Administration and oversees the networks’ primary, specialty and urgent care centers.
Tish is a graduate of Columbia- Greene Community College and The University at Albany, where she earned bachelor’s degrees in psychology and sociology. As an active community volunteer, Tish serves on the leadership boards of the Columbia Economic Development Corporation, Greene County Rural Health Network, and The Second Show thrift shop a Hospital fundraising organization.
Ronald Pope, D.O.
Ronald Pope, D.O. Vice President of Medical Services, Care Centers has served in an administrative role since 2011 as a member of the executive team at CMH since 2014. Previously he worked at Jefferson Heights Family Care in Catskill, NY as a Family Physician.
Dr. Pope oversees a team of administrative staff, clinical providers and physicians across CMH’s network of primary and specialty care centers. In addition, he serves as Medical Director of Staff Health as well as Director of Medical Education and helped develop a mentor program at CMH for medical students.
He previously served as an Assistant Director of Medical Education at Mid-Hudson Family Practice Residency Program and as President & CEO Ocean State Ambulance. As a graduate of the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dr. Pope has worked as both a primary care physician and administrator. He has studied through the American Association of Physician Leadership, and is a Certified Physician Executive through that same organization.
Bryanna Scali joined the CMH Human Resources Department in 2009 and was promoted to a managerial role in 2013 before being named Vice President of Human Resources in January 2017.
In her role at CMH, Brya is responsible for organizational development, recruitment and staffing, employment law, performance management, employee relations, and compensation and benefits for the network’s 1,400 staff members.
Brya earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University at Albany in 2006 and a Master’s degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Alliant International University in San Diego in 2008. Brya is an active member of the Society for Human Resource Management as well as the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology.
Barbara Klassen joined CMH as Executive Director of the Columbia Memorial Health Foundation in March 2019.
Barbara works with the Foundation board of trustees and staff to lead Development initiatives to further enhance the mission of CMH, including: philanthropy, event planning, marketing, communications, and community relations.
Barbara has over 25 years of experience in not-for-profit and healthcare fundraising. Prior to joining the executive team at CMH, Barbara held the position of Executive Director of the Benedictine Health Foundation in Kingston.
Dr. Dorothy M. Urschel DNP, MS, MBA, ACNP-BC, FNP-BC, RNFA, CCRN, NEA-BC is an experienced health care executive who has held senior clinical and administrative leadership posts in numerous health care organizations, most recently at St. Peter’s Health Partners as Vice President of Operations and Chief Nursing Officer at Albany Memorial Hospital, and Vice President of Cardiac and Vascular Services.
An accomplished clinician, administrator and academic, Dr. Urschel is a doctorially prepared acute care and family nurse practitioner. She also holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration.