NewSplash Feature Author Bios
Hank Balch is the cofounder and principal consultant of Beyond Clean. He began his career in instrument reprocessing as a frontline technician in 2009, and has served as an instrument database specialist, department manager, and system director for various SPDs across the country. Hank is an award-winning sterile processing leader (Healthcare Purchasing News 2016 CS/SPD Department of the Year); twice nominated for IAHCSMM president; founder of two state-wide IAHCSMM chapters; conference speaker; and well-known industry writer, blogger, and social media connoisseur. His work has been published in Becker’s Hospital Review, Infection Control Today, Healthcare Purchasing News, PROCESS (formerly Communiqué), Outpatient Surgery Magazine, AAMI’s BI&T, Steri World, and other publications across the globe. His passion is seeing frontline sterile processing professionals equipped to #FightDirty, every instrument, every time.
Linda Condon is the president and CEO of Condon Healthcare Consulting, LLC located in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. She has been in the medical field since 1984 when she graduated from nursing school and took her first job as perioperative nurse. Prior to starting her own consulting company, she was the director of the central sterile processing department at Johns Hopkins Hospital. During her 23-year tenure at Johns Hopkins she actively worked on implementing quality assurance initiatives to include developing measurable metrics for cleaning, assembly, and sterilization processes. She has presented both domestically and internationally to promote safe sterilization practices. She is currently a voting member on several AAMI committees. She holds a master’s degree in business administration and is a published author.
Sarah B. Cruz is a certified sterile processing technician with a passion for the profession. Starting out as a veterinary assistant, she wanted to learn how to reprocess instruments to be more beneficial to the neurology team. She attended a CSS certification program through her local community college and it changed her life in so many ways. After leaving a profession she had for years, Sarah acquired her first job in central sterile processing. It couldn’t have been a better decision! Sarah’s professional ambition is to take her job in CSS and forge her career. The profession has opened numerous doors and opportunities for her that she feels compelled to inform everyone of their own ability to do so. Sarah is looking forward to relaying some of the goals, ambitions, and hurdles that CS technicians face in the trenches, while relaying compelling solutions that will promote patient safety and field growth.
Pawel de Sternberg Stojalowski, MSc, BSc, MBA, is an R&D engineer with passion for clever solutions. From his background in mechanical engineering, automation, robotics, and business stem innovations, Pawel has an interdisciplinary and cooperative approach to projects. He has been involved in R&D of equipment and technologies for decontamination and sterilization of complex surgical instruments since 2007. Today, Pawel leads an expert team researching, designing, prototyping, and evaluating innovative solutions aimed at solving challenges in decontamination of complex surgical instruments, contamination detection, and identification, as well as fluid dynamics and ultrasonic waves in washers.
Shawn Flynn, CRCST, CIS, CHL, has more than 27 years of combined experience as a clinician, technician, manager, director, and senior-level executive in the perioperative/SPD/tissue banking and medical device industry.
He began his career by serving in the U.S. Army as a surgical tech, which included training and working in sterile processing. This was followed by a lengthy career in biotech and tissue banking where he focused on training staff in accordance with FDA, OSHA, and AATB standards. He then took that regulatory and training experience back into healthcare by leading the sterile processing department at one of the largest level 1 trauma centers in the southeast, focusing on training and competencies; restructuring sterile storage for increased efficiency in workflow; replacing antiquated equipment; HLD reprocessing consolidation; and updating all policy and procedures to meet AAMI, AORN, CDC, and TJC standards.
Upon achieving transformational change at Grady Memorial Hospital, he obtained the entrepreneurial bug and cofounded a medical device manufacturing company focused on products and techniques that promote SSI reduction, safety, and productivity in sterile processing and perioperative services. As president and cofounder, he led the company’s efforts in obtaining 510(k) clearance and ISO 13485 with CAMDCAS designation. He has taken that combined unique healthcare experience into leading Stanford’s Lucile Packard Children’s hospital’s SPD in creating the model department, which will include implementing ISO.
Sara Freiberg, CST, CBSPDT, CER, has more than 15 years’ experience working as a certified surgical technologist, with five of those years spent traveling to various operating rooms across the U.S. Following Sara’s time in the clinical arena, she worked as a surgical technology didactic and lab instructor at Rasmussen College. Sara holds bachelor degrees in science and business and marketing, which led to her work with various medical device companies as a clinical specialist, product manager, and clinical training manager. She has experience working on quality and regulatory teams, monitoring patient-adverse events, and postmarket surveillance activities.
Sara currently works for Northfield Medical as a clinical education manager, where she provides education based on current manufacturer and regulatory guidelines regarding various healthcare topics for SPD, OR, and GI staff. Training entails the care and handling of medical devices to ensure patient safety, as well as targeted education addressing department cost concerns. Her passion is working with SPD, OR, and GI departments; providing assessments; and sharing best practices with respect to patient and staff safety, surgical instruments, and medical devices. Sara is a voting member of the AAMI WG84 ST91 flexible endoscope committee, and she has developed several CEU presentations approved through CBSPD, CBRN, NCCT, and IAHCSMM. Sara also authors a healthcare article for Ultra Clean Systems.
Sara is currently studying for the Certification Infection Control (CIC) exam through APIC.
Chuck Hughes, retired founder of SPSmedical Supply Corp., has worked for 30+ years in the manufacturing industry in areas of regulatory affairs, marketing, research and development, microbiology, and sterilization training. He’s been a corporate member APIC, AORN, AST, IAHCSMM, OSAP, SGNA, and numerous other organizations, including AAMI and CSA, where he contributed to writing medical device reprocessing standards. A popular speaker at regional, national, and international healthcare conferences, Chuck has visited thousands of healthcare facilities during his career, providing continuing educational training and mock surveys of medical device reprocessing areas.
David Jagrosse, CRCST, CHL, has 30 years of experience in CSSD/SPD as a technician, supervisor, and manager. He was the Connecticut Central Service Association communications officer (1998–2000), vice president (2006–2008), and served three terms as president (2009–2015). David was a member and chairman of the ASHCSP Recognition Committee. He works with the AAMI Standards Work Group 40 (ST79) as an active voting member that develops guidelines in CSSD, and is the director of the oneSOURCE Speakers Bureau. David is active with IAHCSMM as a member of the orthopedic council and speaker at annual meetings, and has served IAHCSMM in many capacities, including president (2015–2016). He has been published in Communiqué/Process, Infection Control Today, Healthcare Purchasing News, and AAMI Horizons. David is a consultant for AAMI-based audits to CSS/OR audiences internationally.
Rebecca Kinney has been working to improve patient safety in the medical arena for more than 13 years. She provides educational content on LinkedIn to help sterile processing and medical professionals gain knowledge as it relates to surgical devices, and her articles have appeared in Outpatient Surgery magazine. Her articles focus on the practical, hands-on knowledge operating room professionals can benefit from—never lacking in entertainment as she unfolds the true reality and struggles that are faced every day in the operating room setting. She is also a small business owner of a startup sales and marketing consulting agency.
Mary Olivera, MHA, CRCST, CHL, FCS has over 30 years of experience in numerous roles in healthcare sterile processing, distribution, and materials management. Ms. Olivera participates in monitoring, surveying, and training interdepartmental staff in the proper cleaning, decontamination, and sterilization practices, and has been highly committed to the standardization of interdepartmental processes. A regular recruit on expert panels regarding sterile processing and a past president of the New York State Central Service organization, she continues to play a major role in promoting higher educational requirements for central service professionals to increase patient safety.
Ms. Olivera brings to the table extensive knowledge of Joint Commission, DNV-GL, AAMI, OSHA, CDC, and DoH regulations. She specializes in budgeting, change management, inventory management, process re-engineering, program and project management, vendor relationships, quality control, Six Sigma, supply chain, and total quality management.
Ms. Olivera is an educator and has published numerous articles related to sterile processing, surgical services, process improvement, and guides to achieve successful accreditation surveys.
Rose Seavey, MBA, BS, RN, CNOR, CRCST, CSPDT, is the president/CEO of Seavey Healthcare Consulting, LLC, and formerly the director of the sterile processing department at The Children’s Hospital of Denver. Ms. Seavey served on the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) board of directors from 2008–10. She received AORN’s award for Outstanding Achievement in Mentorship in 2012 and the Outstanding Achievement in Clinical Nurse Education in 2001.
In 2003, Rose served as president of the American Society of Healthcare Central Service Professionals (ASHCSP) and was awarded the National Educator of the Year Award in 2002. Rose was selected as one of the Who’s Who in Infection Prevention in 2006 by Infection Control Today.
Ms. Seavey also received the 2013 national IAHCSMM Award of Honor, the Industry Leadership Award from the Massachusetts chapter, and the Educator of the Year Award from the Golden West chapter.
Ms. Seavey is widely published in professional journals and is the author of the book Sterile Processing in Healthcare Facilities: Preparing for Accreditation Surveys, published by AAMI. She sat on the AAMI national nominating committee for 2011–14 and cochaired the AAMI working group for hospital steam sterilizers from 2006–13. She is a member of several AAMI working group committees and is on the ST79 advisory council (2013–15). In addition, she has given more than 300 presentations nationally and internationally.
Alison Sonstelie has 10 years of healthcare experience in sterile processing and supply chain. She is currently a lead sterile processing coordinator at Sanford Health in Fargo, North Dakota. In addition to her current role, she is an educator, speaker, a member of AAMI work groups, and a consultant for healthcare facilities and industry suppliers.
Jonathan A. Wilder, Ph.D., has worked with all thermal and chemical sterilization methods, as well as cleaning and disinfection methodologies, bringing his background in physical chemistry and surface physics to bear upon difficult problems in the field. He has been an active participant in U.S. and international standards development since 1998 through AAMI.
Dr. Wilder is the managing director and chief scientific officer for Quality Processing Resource Group, which provides consulting that covers the entire spectrum of needs of medical device reprocessing facilities and manufacturers of reusable medical devices. He is the president and cofounder of Stericert. Stericert offers products, services, and consulting in the areas of medical device reprocessing, including sterilization, disinfection, and cleaning. He was a staff scientist for Getinge USA, where he was responsible for the development of new sterilization, washing, and disinfection technologies and developed a plasma sterilization method upon which four patents were granted.
Dr. Wilder’s academic background includes a doctoral study in physical chemistry and a postdoctoral study in surface physics, with fellowships from the U.S. Department of Energy in physical chemistry and the Max Planck Society in surface physics. He has been published in academic and trade journals. He holds an MBA in technology management. He has been an active participant in AAMI sterilization standards committees since 1998 and, as of January 2018, he is the cochair of the U.S. standards-making committee for hospital steam sterilizers.
Lisa M. McKown, MBA, CRCST, CIS, CHL, MBTI, is a sterile processing education and quality coordinator for the Indianapolis Suburban Region of IU Health Network. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Integrative Leadership and an MBA from Anderson University. Lisa is preparing to begin a doctoral program in public health through IUPUI in Indianapolis, IN. She also holds a certification as a Meyers-Briggs Practitioner, specializing in interpersonal communication. Lisa contributes as an SME volunteer for standards development and other industry-related projects that promote the sterile processing profession, including writing workshops focused on creating and revising questions for the IAHCSMM certification exams. As a healthcare professional driven to influence positive change for patient safety initiatives, Lisa is a catalyst for the advancement of infection prevention within sterile processing. Her passion is education and she is energized when she can use her experience to develop people.
Marjorie Wall is a director of sterile processing at Kaiser Permanente and IAHCSMM board of directors member. As a sterile processing leader with over 20 years of industry experience, Marjorie pushes the boundaries for change and innovation in her organization and in the industry. Marjorie built her career turning around underperforming departments and is now an industry change driver as a writer and keynote speaker.
Marjorie has achieved a masters of organizational leadership from Azusa Pacific University, CRCST, CIS, and CHL certifications from IAHCSMM, and Six Sigma Black Belt Certification from the American Society for Quality. Marjorie has personally developed 12 frontline staff into SPD leaders and 13 SPD techs into Six Sigma Yellow Belts.
Marjorie Wall’s life philosophy is, “Sometimes you have to take a leap and build your wings on the way down.” We have to be willing to change and improve through the toughest challenges. We have to lead SPD.
Julie Williamson has served as IAHCSMM’s editor since 2000 and also serves as IAHCSMM’s communications director. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has had hundreds of articles published on topics related to sterile processing, surgical services, infection prevention, and materials management. In her IAHCSMM roles, she writes, coordinates, and edits articles for IAHCSMM’s PROCESS magazine and its e-newsletter, Insights; researches, writes, and edits articles for various healthcare journals and trade publications; drafts press materials; and mentors up-and-coming authors and editorial contributors.