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Leadership

Karen Teitelbaum
President and Chief Executive Officer of Sinai Health System
"I am in health care because I want to feel that I’m making a difference every day. At Sinai Health System, I work with smart, committed, passionate colleagues all together on this important journey."

Karen Teitelbaum is the President/Chief Executive Officer at Sinai Health System, an urban, teaching health care system comprised of four hospitals, an epidemiological research institute focusing on health care disparities, a community institute, over 800 medical staff members, and 4,000 employees. Focused on the delivery of high-quality services in an efficient and cost-effective manner, Sinai Health System, Chicago’s largest safety net system, has achieved national recognition in quality while reducing costs by millions of dollars due to greater efficiency and management of population health.    

Karen serves on the boards of the Illinois Health and Hospital Association (Nominating and Governing Committee), The Kennedy Forum Illinois (External Affairs and Leadership Councils), Women in Health-Life Sciences, the David Lynch Foundation Advisory Council, and has been a board member of the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council, Family Health Network, the Theraplay Institute, Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy Foundation, and the Young Women’s Leadership Charter School.  She served on the American Hospital Association Task Force on Ensuring Access for Vulnerable Communities, and the American Hospital Association Council on Maternal Fetal Health, and chaired the Building Committee for a significant Federally Qualified Healthcare Center.  She is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, The Chicago Network, and the Commercial Club of Chicago.

She has been named one of “130 Nonprofit Hospital & Health System CEOs to Know” by Becker´s Hospital Review, as well as being named one of the “Leaders of Chicago Healthcare” by the same publication. Karen has taught both graduate and undergraduate courses in managed care and marketing and strategy for nonprofit organizations and is a frequently requested national speaker on health care delivery topics such as population health management in an urban environment.

Karen holds a Master’s of Management degree from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management.  

 

 

 

 

Loren Chandler
Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Operating and Financial Officer
"I am in 
health care because I believe what I do matters and what matters is making a difference in people’s lives."

Loren F. Chandler serves as Sinai Health System's Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating and Financial Officer. Mr. Chandler became part of Sinai with the acquisition of Holy Cross Hospital where he served as the Executive Vice President, Chief Operating and Financial Officer. Prior to his current role, Mr. Chandler was Sinai Health System’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer and President of Mount Sinai Hospital. Mr. Chandler has led and served at health systems and medical centers throughout the United States.

Mr. Chandler has been instrumental in improving organizational outcomes and his contributions have been recognized in several publications. He actively participates in Illinois Hospital Association’s Safety Net Hospital Constituency Steering Committee, is a Fellow with American College of Healthcare Executives, and a frequent guest lecturer and forum moderator. 

 

 

 

 

Lori Pacura
President of Acute Care Hospitals for Sinai Health System
"I am in health care to journey with those who are fragile and hurting; to listen, to touch, to care."

Now president of our acute care hospitals, Lori Pacura served as President of Holy Cross Hospital since 2013. Previously, she was the Vice President of Patient Care Services/Chief Nursing Officer at Mount Sinai and Schwab Rehabilitation Hospitals, as well as the Vice President of Clinical Excellence at both hospitals. Lori first joined Sinai Health System in 2001 after 25 years of hospital leadership in Chicagoland health care.

Ms. Pacura earned a Nursing Diploma from the Evangelical School of Nursing in Oak Lawn, Illinois, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Elmhurst College in Elmhurst, Illinois, and a Master of Science in Nursing from Saint Xavier University in Chicago. She completed the health services management program at Kellogg Graduate School of Management in Evanston, Illinois and also obtained a legal nurse consultant certification from the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants. She has been published in peer-reviewed nursing journals and has presented her work at professional conferences and meetings throughout the country. Lori is passionate about care for the homeless and serves on the board of Southwest Homeless Services.

 

 

 

Jason Spigner
Chief Human Resources Officer of Sinai Health System
"
I am in health care because there is something special about being a part of a team that makes a difference for our patients and community. Everday, I'm motivated to make a difference and improve the work-life culture of our caregivers."      

Jason N. Spigner, SPHR, MBA, is Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) and Vice President for Sinai Health System. Jason brings a rich background of over 20 years of leadership and human resources experience. Prior to joining Sinai, he worked at Advocate Health Care as a vice president in multiple hospitals and health care settings. 

Throughout his career, Spigner has been instrumental in spearheading cultural change to drive financial turnarounds. Using a collaborative and participatory management style, he has consistently designed and implemented processes to drive leadership engagement and development, as well as workforce development. Jason is committed to service and serves on many community boards, including Cornerstone Counseling Center of Chicago and the Chicagoland Healthcare Workforce Collaborative. 

 

 

 

 

Gail Mahaffey
Chief Development Officer of Sinai Health System

"I am in health care because health is the foundation of all human achievement. One cannot achieve their potential as a parent, student, worker, leader, or artist without physical and emotional vitality. For anyone not to achieve their potential, is a loss for all of us."

Gail Mahaffey joined Sinai Health System as the Chief Development Officer in 2015. She has over 20 years of experience in development and moved to Chicago in 2005 to join the Museum of Science and Industry’s $250 million capital campaign team. She has a bachelor’s of Business Administration from the University of Toledo and did her graduate work at Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management in Cleveland, Ohio.

Prior to joining Sinai, she helped transform Navy Pier from a 100-year-old government organization to a nonprofit cultural institution. As the Vice President of Development, she built the Pier’s first development enterprise and raised over $25 million in three years to support the physical redevelopment and to launch the new arts and culture programming. She also served as the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (now called the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab) during their $300 million capital campaign. 

 

 

 

 

 

Roberta Rakove
Senior Vice President of External Affairs and Strategy for Sinai Health System
"I am in health care because I believe that access to care is a right, not a privilege. Being part of Sinai Health System gives me the opportunity to help to make this a reality for the communities we serve."

Roberta Rakove has served as the Senior Vice President for External Affairs for Sinai Health System since 1990. Born and raised in Chicago, Ms. Rakove’s parents grew up in the Sinai community and her mother was born at Sinai. Ms. Rakove earned a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Illinois School of Public Health and a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Pitzer College in Claremont California.

Ms. Rakove is a past chair of the government affairs committee of the National Association of Public Hospitals, member of the policy council for the Premier Hospital Alliance, past member of the advocacy council of the Illinois Hospital Association, member of the advocacy council of the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council, and member of the government affairs committee for the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. She is also a board member of Mujeres Latinas en Accion, and a member of the American Jewish Committee Bridging America Project on immigration justice. Ms. Rakove was the Illinois recipient of the American Hospital Association “Grass Roots Champion” Award and recipient of the Chicago Avodah Partner in Social Justice Award.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Sharon Homan
President of SInai Urban Health Institute 
"I am in health care because I hope to contribute my public health expertise, passion and optimism to improving the health and well-being of people living in our Chicago communities. Together, our Sinai Urban Health Institute team works to engage partners from many sectors (eg., tech innovators, government, housing and community entities) in promoting active and healthy lives by using practical, science-based approaches that draw upon the diverse perspectives and resources of our community areas." 

Sharon Homan, PhD, MS, President of the Sinai Urban Health Institute, is a biostatistician and maternal child mental health epidemiologist. Previously, Dr. Homan served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology and Associate Dean for Research at the University of North Texas School of Public Health in Fort Worth, Texas.

Her prior experience includes public health leadership and faculty positions with Rockhurst University (Academic Vice President), the Kansas Health Institute (Vice President for Public Health) and Saint Louis University (Professor of Biostatistics).

Dr. Homan received her doctoral and master’s degrees from the University of Iowa, studying biostatistics, preventive medicine and environmental health. She completed additional studies in psychiatric epidemiology, theology and social ethics.

Dr. Homan brings a wealth of experience and publications in public health research and evaluation, with particular dedication to maternal and child health, violence prevention and community health improvement initiatives. Her research has been funded by NIH, HRSA, CDC, DOJ state contracts and foundations. 

 

 

Debra Wesley
President of Sinai Community Institute

"I am in health care because I have dedicated my life to creating real solutions to human conditions that can become barriers to healthy, happy productive lives for Chicago’s most vulnerable families.  As a leader, problems have strengthened my ability to be creative, flexible, adaptive and visionary as a human service professional within a health care institution."

Debra G. Wesley is a social entrepreneur, leader and community builder, as well as founder of Sinai Community Institute (SCI), where she serves as president. SCI is a health system-based social services organization that has touched over 565,000 individual through its 70 plus programs since 1993. She is also Sinai Health System’s Executive Vice President for Community Outreach.

Ms. Wesley, a masters-trained social worker (Jane Addams College of Social Work, University of Illinois at Chicago) understands “community” at the micro- and macro-levels. As a “preacher’s daughter” and resident of Chicago’s West side as a child, she can feel the pride and pain of neighborhoods that have known accomplishment, as well as poverty, crime and unemployment.

Ms. Wesley has developed innovative, community-based programs that have received national recognition.  She facilitated the incubation of the North Lawndale Employment Network and served for five years on its Board of Directors as its chair. She is the chair of I AM ABLE Board of Directors.  She is a member of the Steering Committee for the North Lawndale Coordinating Community Committee and chair of the Health and Wellness Committee. She completed 10 years as chair of the Latino Alzheimer’s Memory Disorder Alliance. Additionally, she is a member of the board for the Deal Foundation, a member of the CineCares Foundation and the Michele Foods Advisory Board. She completed 20 years as a member of the Board of Directors for the Westside Association for Community Action, 10 years as a member of the Legacy Charter School Board of Directors, as well as four years as a member of the Board of Directors for Young Women’s Leadership Charter School. Ms. Wesley is also a Denali Initiative Class II Harvard University/Babson College Social Entrepreneurial Fellow.

 

 

 

 

Dr. Michelle Gittler
Director of Schwab Rehabilitation Hospital
"I am in health care because I get to do what I love and love what I do - care and advocate for people. It is an opportunity to practice social responsibility on a daily basis." 


Dr. Michelle Gittler is the medical director of Schwab Rehabilitation Hospital. She is the chair of physical medicine and rehabilitation, and also residency program director. She has been practicing rehabilitation medicine for almost 25 years at Schwab. She is an expert in working with individuals who have sustained violently acquired disabilities and has been on the forefront of promoting the concept of firearm violence as a public health issue. Dr. Gittler spends a great deal of time working with individuals who have sustained a variety of disabling conditions, and is particularly interested in spinal cord injury care, amputee medicine and prosthetics.

In addition to directing the residency program at Schwab for over 20 years, Dr. Gittler has also been chairman of the medical education committee for the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and serves as treasurer of the Board of Governors for the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. She was a member of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, PMR Milestone Committee from 2012 until 2014. 

After graduating from the University of Michigan, she attended medical school at University of Illinois, graduating as a James Scholar. She completed her residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at Northwestern/Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Dr. Gittler is Board certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation, as well as in spinal cord injury medicine. She is currently an associate professor of surgery in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Chicago and is Visiting Clinical Professor of Rehabilitation at University of Illinois Hospital.

Dr. Gittler has been named “Top Doctor” in Chicago Magazine consistently since 2005. Together with her husband, Dr. Lee Francis, who is CEO of the Erie Family Health Center, she received the Avodah Chicago Partners in Justice Award. They have two daughters, Hannah and Laila. 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Maria Iliescu-Levine
Chief Medical Officer of Sinai Health System and Chair of Internal Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital
"I am in health care because after losing my aunt to cancer, I promised to dedicate my life to learning, teaching, and healing others. Keeping her in mind has allowed me to give back to the community."

Maria Ilisecu-Levine, M.D. is the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) at Sinai Health System. Before becoming the CMO at Sinai, Dr. Iliescu-Levine served as President of the Medical Staff, Director of Intensive Care, Chair of Internal Medicine, and Vice Chief Medical Officer at Sinai. 

A native of Romania, Dr. Iliescu-Levine graduated from Romania’s oldest medical school, Carol Davilla. After graduating, she completed her residency in internal medicine and fellowship in pulmonary critical care at Chicago Medical School. She now serves as an Assistant Professor of Pulmonary and Critical Care at her alma mater. She has been published in Case Reports in Critical Care and has conducted research on the treatment of acute bronchial asthma. In her spare time, Dr. Iliescu-Levine volunteers at the Chicago Community Clinic.