Board of Directors - 2018
AHIMA is governed by the Board of Directors. Members of AHIMA elect a president-elect and directors each year to serve in the role of governing the association, setting strategy and maintaining fiscal oversight and fiduciary responsibility. The AHIMA Board of Directors consists of 13 members including the CEO, who serves in an ex-officio role.
Diann H. Smith, MS, RHIA, CHP, FAHIMA
Vice President, HIMS and CDI at Texas Health Resources
Integrated Healthcare System
Diann H. Smith is Vice President of Health Information Management Services and Clinical Documentation Improvement at Texas Health Resources in Arlington, TX, an integrated health system with 29 hospitals. Smith develops and executes system-wide standardization, efficiencies, and strategies that support the overall performance and quality improvement for Texas Health. She is a published author and experienced speaker on a variety of healthcare-related topics. She has served as chair on the AHIMA Professional Ethics Committee, a director on the AHIMA board, president of the Texas Health Information Management Association (TXHIMA) and commissioner on the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).
Smith earned a Master of Science in Human Relations and Business from Amberton University, as well as a Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management from Texas Woman’s University. She is a fellow of AHIMA.
Smith has received several notable local and national awards including the TXHIMA Distinguished Member Award, outstanding leadership awards from the YWCA of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, Texas, the AHIMA Triumph Leadership Award, the 2016 Inspiring Women Award, and most recently, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated®., Xi Theta Omega Chapter named Smith the 2017 Woman of the Year community award, of which she is also an active member.
On a more personal note, Smith is a proud breast cancer survivor and was the 2015 Ambassador for the American Cancer Society (ACS) North Texas Region. Smith’s daughter, Dee, succumbed to breast cancer in 2017, and Smith remains a strong supporter of breast cancer research and awareness. She currently serves on the ACS Advisory Board of Tarrant County, Texas.
Valerie J. Watzlaf, Ph.D., MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA
Vice Department Chair of Education and Associate Professor
University of Pittsburgh - Department of Health Information Management
School of Health and Rehabilitation Science
Valerie J. Watzlaf, Ph.D., MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA, is an associate professor in the department of health information management at the University of Pittsburgh, in PA. She has worked as a HIM practitioner and consulted in several healthcare organizations in HIM, long-term care, and epidemiology. Watzlaf has chaired and served on multiple AHIMA committees and boards including the Board of Directors, and the AHIMA Foundation, and served as CEE Chair. She has delivered over 100 presentations, authored over 50 publications, and is the recipient of numerous awards and professional accolades including the AHIMA Research Triumph Award, PHIMA’s (Pennsylvania’s) Distinguished Member Award, and the University of Pittsburgh's SHRS Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Ann F. Chenoweth, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA
Senior Director, Industry Relations
3M Health Information Systems
Salt Lake City, UT
Ann Chenoweth, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA, is an accomplished leader with a strong background in business management, health information management, and association leadership. Chenoweth joined 3M Health Information Systems in 2001 and has held numerous positions including Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, product line marketing manager for the coding and reimbursement suite of products, and executive leader for the medical necessity and compliance business – a $20 million dollar business. Currently, Chenoweth is senior director of industry relations. In this role, she creates and builds relationships with leading healthcare associations and industry executives. She focuses on developing high-value partnerships that will benefit the healthcare industry and 3M customers.
She also served as a director on AHIMA’s board from 2012 to 2014 where she was chair of both the audit committee and finance committee and held the position of AHIMA treasurer. Chenoweth has served associations at both the state and national level. She is a past president of both the Illinois Health Information Management Association and the Utah Health Information Management System Society.
Chenoweth is an RHIA and AHIMA Fellow. She is also a certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt. Chenoweth is a health information management graduate of Indiana University and received an MBA from DePaul University in Chicago, IL. She is a published author and frequent speaker at industry conferences on such topics as information governance, payment reform, and leadership.
Speaker of The House of Delegates
Catherine Porto, MPA, RHIA, CHP, FAHIMA
Executive Director of Health Information
University of New Mexico Hospitals
Catherine E. Porto, MPA, RHIA, CHP is executive director of health information at the University of New Mexico Hospitals in Albuquerque, NM. She has served as a director on the AHIMA Board of Directors, as the Team Lead for Member Services, Board liaison to the Practice Council Physician Practice, COP Advisory Task Force, and liaison to the Professional Resources Task Force. Porto has also served as a member of the AHIMA Triumph Awards Committee; a member of the CSA Advisory Task Force, and member of the HOD Delegate Task Force. She has served four terms as president of the NMHIMA component state association, and at least twelve HoD terms. She is a passionate and experienced AHIMA member with a proven track record in AHIMA leadership and forward-thinking organizational roles promoting EHR implementation and information governance. Porto is always ready to accept and lead new health information challenges.
Wylecia Wiggs Harris, Ph.D., CAE
Chief Executive Officer, AHIMA
Wylecia Wiggs Harris, Ph.D. joins AHIMA after serving as CEO of the League of Women Voters of the United States (LWVUS) and the League of Women Voters Education Fund. While at the LWVUS, Dr. Harris was responsible for enlivening the national organization. Working with her Board of Directors, she created and lead an organizational transformation strategy to increase the impact, relevance, and visibility of the LWVUS and its 700+ affiliates. Prior to her work at LWVUS, Dr. Harris held senior executive positions at the American Nurses Association, including as Chief Operating Officer, was executive director of the Center for American Nurses and executive director of the Maryland-based Sister to Sister Foundation—a national organization supporting women’s health issues and heart disease education. Dr. Harris also served as senior vice president and executive director at the American Heart Association.
Dr. Harris holds a Ph.D. in organizational development from Capella University in Minneapolis, Minnesota; a master of management degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois; and both a bachelor and honorary doctor of humane letters degree from Wittenberg University, in Springfield, Ohio. She is an ASAE-certified executive director and certified facilitator for leadership assessments through the Center for Creative Leadership.
Advisor to the Board
John P. Hoyt, FACHE, FHIMSS
Executive Vice President Emeritus
John P. Hoyt was Executive Vice President Emeritus, HIMSS Analytics at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, the largest U.S. not-for-profit healthcare caused-based organization focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of information technology. While a full time Executive Vice President, Mr. Hoyt was responsible for providing executive leadership and direction to HIMSS Analytics worldwide where he also provided direction for all Stage 6 and Stage 7 validations and derivative research. Now as consultant to HIMSS Analytics, Mr. Hoyt continues to conduct Stage 6 and Stage 7 validations, consulting engagements globally pertaining to HIMSS Analytics maturity models and is the principle architect and interpreter of the revised acute care EMRAM standards which were announced at HIMSS 2016 in Las Vegas for use in 2018.
Throughout his healthcare career, Hoyt has been instrumental in defining business and IT strategy as well as selecting, implementing and integrating mission-critical healthcare information systems across the enterprise. Before joining HIMSS, Hoyt served as a hospital Chief Operating Officer and twice as a Chief Information Officer with various healthcare organizations accumulating in over 22 years of hospital executive committee leadership experience. Mr. Hoyt served in consultancy practices, including: IBM Healthlink Services and First Data Health Systems Group.
Hoyt holds a BSBA in Economics from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, and an MHA from St. Louis University in Missouri. He is a HIMSS Fellow and a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE). He joins the Board in a volunteer, non-voting role as advisor.
Anupam Goel, MD
Vice President of Clinical Information
Advocate Health Care
Anupam Goel, is vice president of clinical information at Advocate Health Care. A general internist who is board certified in clinical informatics, Goel serves as the physician liaison for Advocate’s largest inpatient electronic medical record. As a quality officer for the UC San Diego Health System, Goel was the co-principal investigator for a multi-million dollar federal cooperative agreement to help connect electronic health records across the San Diego metropolitan area. He joins the Board in a volunteer, non-voting role as advisor.
3rd Year Directors:
Term ends 2018
Danika E. Brinda, PhD, RHIA, CHPS, HCISPP
The College of St. Scholastica
Danika Brinda is an Associate Professor in Health Informatics and Information Management at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, MN. She is also the owner of TriPoint Healthcare Solutions which provides privacy and security consulting services to healthcare organizations. Danika has been very active on in the Minnesota Health Information Management Association, holding multiple volunteer positions, including President in 2013-14 and Advocacy Co-Chair in 2014-15. Danika has also volunteered on a variety of different committees for AHIMA, including the Professional Practices Experience (PPE) workgroup. Danika serves as an expert in healthcare privacy and security. She is a local and national speaker on all topics Healthcare Privacy and Security related. She is the recipient 2010 recipient of AHIMA’s Rising Star Triumph Award.
Ellen Shakespeare Karl, MBA, RHIA, CHDA, FAHIMA
Academic Director, Health Information Management Programs
City University of New York School of Professional Studies
New York, NY
Ellen Shakespeare Karl is the academic director for the HIM Programs and distinguished lecturer at the City University of New York which includes a BS program in HIM as well as a Medical Coding Certificate program. Prior to entering academia, Ellen was the director or assistant director of HIM departments at hospitals in NY, NJ and FL, after starting in the profession with CDC working on the SENIC project. She was the chair, chair-elect, and past-chair of AHIMA’s Council for Excellence in Education. She also served as a member of AHIMA’s HIE Practice Council. Ellen served as treasurer, president-elect, president, and past-president of the NJHIMA and is now a member of NYHIMA.
Tim J. Keough, MPA, RHIA, FAHIMA
Vice President, Health Information Services
New Jersey Hospital Association, Healthcare Business Solutions
Tim Keough is vice president at the New Jersey Hospital Association, Healthcare Business Solutions where he leads the health information services consulting division. He has been chair of AHIMA’s Nominating Committee, co-chair of the HOD’s Environmental Scan Team, and a member of the Program Committee. Within NJHIMA, Tim served two terms as president, chaired the Membership and Industry Recognition Task group, served as CoP facilitator and received the 2002 Distinguished Member award. Over the past three years, he has been workgroup co-chair of the NJ Division of Banking and Insurance – NJHA Task Group on ICD-10 Implementation. Tim is an advocate for education and has supported the educational programs around the state by acting as an advisory member as well as professional practice site.
2nd Year Directors:
Term ends 2019
Jill S. Clark, MBA, RHIA, CHDA, FAHIMA
Senior Consultant and Director of Coding
Red Lion, PA
Jill Clark, is senior consultant and director of Coding Services at e4, where she supports large healthcare initiatives, contributing to HIM projects and organizational strategy. Prior to joining e4, Clark was a director of HIM Solutions at AHIMA, where she provided professional expertise to members. Her career includes management in a variety of healthcare settings, as well as an engagement manager position for a large software vendor. Clark has served in various volunteer leadership roles and on committees as a member of AHIMA, the Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association, and the Central Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association. She has contributed to numerous professional articles and serves as a part-time instructor for DeVry University, Health Information Technology Program.
Dwan Thomas-Flowers MBA, RHIA, CDIP, CCS
Dwan Thomas-Flowers is a healthcare consultant, offering expertise in coding, management, HIM operations, quality management and revenue cycle. Currently, she serves as an Interim Director of Coding for a large teaching medical center and member of AHIMA’s CDI practice council. Dwan is a former chair of the Clinical Terminology and Classification practice council. Other AHIMA activities include past Professional Ethics and Triumph Award committee member, HOD Best Practices and Standards and Operations teams and ACE designation. Involved in several professional associations, she’s held positions in many such as AHIMA, FHIMA, HIMSS, NAHSE and NFAHQ. She is former chair of the HIMSS ICD-10 Task Force, past-president of FHIMA and recipient of multiple industry awards including two AHIMA Triumph Awards for Leadership and Mentoring and two FHIMA Distinguished Member designations. A frequent instructor for CCS preparatory workshops and sought-after presenter within healthcare, her publications are found in industry magazines such as “Advance for HIM Professionals” where she served on panels for Coding and Management Q&A columns.
Karen S. Scott, MEd, RHIA, CCS-P, FAHIMA
Senior Training Specialist
Karen Scott, is senior training specialist at TruCode and owner of Karen Scott Seminars and Consulting. She has been an educator for many years, teaching in the HIM programs at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and Arkansas Tech University. She has worked as an HIM director in an acute care hospital setting, training director for a national transcription company, and reimbursement specialist for a regional physicians group. She is past president of the Tennessee and Arkansas Health Information Management Associations, past chair of the AHIMA Council on Certification, and recently completed a six-year term as commissioner for CAHIIM.
1st Year Directors:
Term ends 2020
Seth Jeremy Katz, MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA
Associate Administrator of Information Management
Truman Medical Center
Kansas City, MO
Seth Jeremy Katz, MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA, is the associate administrator of information management at Truman Medical Centers in Kansas City, MO. In addition to responsibility for HIM, Katz focuses on strategic projects including referral management and improved patient access. For more than 10 years he has directed the transformation of Truman’s HIM department to a fully electronic system; the department was awarded the 2013 Grace Award in recognition for these changes. Outside of Truman, he was the 2015-2016 president of MoHIMA, (Missouri), is the current co-chair for the House Leadership team and has served on various AHIMA committees. Additionally, Katz is consulting faculty for the HIM program at the University of Kansas Medical Center.
Kim D. Theodos, JD, MS, RHIA
Assistant Professor of Health Studies
University of Louisiana Monroe
Kim D. Theodos, JD, MS, RHIA, is an assistant professor of Health Studies at the University of Louisiana Monroe (ULM). At ULM she teaches health informatics, healthcare leadership and healthcare administration. Previously, she taught undergraduate and graduate courses in the HIIM program at Louisiana Tech University. She has served at the state and national level in various capacities including LHIMA (Louisiana) president, treasurer and secretary, annual convention chair and education strategy manager. Theodos was a member of the AHIMA Annual Convention Program Committee for four years, serving as chair in 2015. With numerous presentations at meetings, publications and service, Theodos has been a consistent contributor to AHIMA’s HIM Body of Knowledge.
Melinda A. Wilkins, PhD, RHIA, FAHIMA
Professor and Director of Health Information Management
Arkansas Tech University
Melinda A. Wilkins, PhD, RHIA, FAHIMA, serves as professor/program director of the graduate program in health informatics and undergraduate program in HIM at Arkansas Tech University. She has additionally worked in an outpatient and inpatient setting as well as in consulting. Wilkins is a recent recipient of the AHIMA Leadership Triumph Award, and has served in many volunteer roles at both the national and state level. Most recently she has served as the chair of the Board for CAHIIM as well as a consultant for Arkansas’s health information exchange efforts.
The House of Delegates (HoD) is a deliberative assembly comprised of delegates elected or appointed from each of the 52 Component State Associations (CSA) and the AHIMA Board of Directors. Delegates serve as a grassroots member forum of AHIMA governing the health information management (HIM) profession. The HoD is chaired by the Speaker of the House, an AHIMA official elected by delegates.
Delegates work virtually year-round, operating on a July 1-June 30 term advocating for the profession, the members, and the Association. These leaders help keep our profession strong and moving forward by contributing or recommending action on issues affecting the industry.
Founded in 1946, the House of Delegates is a long-standing, decision-making body of our professional association. Delegates have a critical role in guiding and governing the health information management (HIM) profession.
In 2012, the HoD implemented a new, forward-thinking approach to the operations and configuration of the House of Delegates. Consisting of the House Leadership, Envisioning Collaborative and ad hoc Task Forces, the HoD allows for agility and diverse input for strategic planning to better address and meet the needs of our members, profession, and industry.
2017-2018 Speaker of the House – Catherine Porto, MPA, RHIA, CHP, FAHIMA
We gather input from the Envisioning Collaborative consisting of one selected delegate per state to help inform the Board in setting strategy. We have a House Leadership team consisting of one CSA delegate per state. Along with subject matter experts from other relevant areas, delegates not on the House Leadership Team or Envisioning Collaborative can join Task Forces. As issues come through the House Leadership pipeline and are vetted, delegates will be notified and assembled to address them. The HoD offers a variety of activities for participation and cross-collaboration, such as vetting practice briefs for Practice Councils and joining workgroups with other volunteer groups.
This approach will position the House of Delegates to move more agilely to address the issues facing our profession today, tomorrow, and in the future and will allow the HoD to make the best use of time and effort for our delegates to govern the profession.
House Leadership will serve as a steering committee consisting of 52 CSA delegates. They ensure effective House of Delegates operations through alignment with strategy. House leadership provides oversight and direction to designated task forces and operations.
House Leadership members will identify best practices, document performance, and foster innovation and agility in decision making.
The Envisioning Collaborative serves as a "think tank" comprised of delegates, subject matter experts, and industry leaders bringing forward emerging issues and trends that can impact the HIM profession.
The Collaborative charges are to conduct environmental scanning year-round by looking at our environment (internally and externally), gathering the data, consolidating and discussing the information, and validating the results. a robust exchange of perspectives, innovation, and ideas that will contribute to the strategic planning process and enable sound decision-making.
2011-2012 – Susan Parker, MED, RHIA, FAHIMA
2012-2013 – Kimberly Baldwin-Stried Reich, MBA, MJ, RHIA, PBCI, CPHQ, FAHIMA
2013-2014 – Jennifer McManis
2014-2015 – Laura Pait, RHIA, CDIP, CCS
2015-2016 – Elizabeth Delahoussaye, RHIA, CHPS
2017-2018 – Catherine E. Porto, MPA, RHIA, CHP, FAHIMA
Task forces create a member focused objective. Task force members can be comprised of delegates, subject matter experts, and industry leaders.
Throughout the year, a call to serve will be sent to delegates on a variety of topics. Delegates may be reached personally depending on their areas of expertise. Ad hoc task forces will allow for more flexibility and agility in the completion of projects.
AHIMA is a federation with affiliated entities. We work in conjunction with these partners to provide quality healthcare through quality information.
To learn more about the relationships between AHIMA, CAHIIM, CCHIIM & CEE please view our Education FAQ.
The AHIMA Foundation improves health information management by supporting the people, research and resources that advance the HIM profession.
Through scholarships and grants for HIM students, professional education and advancement programs, research, and a comprehensive HIM resource library, the AHIMA Foundation takes the lead in advancing the HIM industry.
The AHIMA Foundation, founded in 1962, is the 501(c)(3) charitable affiliate of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) dedicated to providing resources to support continuous innovation and advances in health information management. Today, the AHIMA Foundation is the pre-eminent foundation recognized for excellence in health information leadership, policy, education, and research for the healthcare industry and the public.
Learn more about the Foundation
CCHIIM is an AHIMA commission founded in 1981, dedicated to assuring the competency of professionals practicing HIIM. CCHIIM serves the public by establishing, implementing, and enforcing standards and procedures for certification and recertification of HIIM professionals. CCHIIM provides strategic oversight of all AHIMA certification programs. This standing commission of AHIMA is empowered with the sole and independent authority in all matters pertaining to both the initial certification and ongoing recertification (certification maintenance) of HIIM professionals. Commissioners represent a broad spectrum of health informatics and information management professionals, and must be AHIMA-certified and meet certification, work experience, and leadership requirements in order to serve on the commission
Learn more about CCHIIM
AHIMA is a federation, which includes a system of component state organizations (state chapters) in every state plus Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico. Component state associations (CSAs) provide their members with local access to professional education and networking. CSAs also serve as an important forum for communicating national issues and keeping members informed of regional affairs that affect health information management. For more information on how to connect with colleagues in your area, click your state's name below. If you are an AHIMA member, please visit the Engage CSA Community.
CSAs support AHIMA by helping in recruitment and retention of members. Here is a CSA Member Recruitment flyer to use in those efforts.
District of Columbia