Health Advisory Committee

The organizational structure under which the Kane County Health Department operates designates the members of the County Board in the dual roles as members of the Board of Health. In order to provide expert health advice to KCHD, per Illinois state statute, a nine-member Health Advisory Committee (HAC) of community members advises KCHD in decision-making. State law mandates that a health advisory committee comprised of health leaders, consumers and subject matter experts, including a licensed doctor, dentist and nurse, be appointed to help guide county decisions on a wide range of health-related issues.

Lourdes (Lulu) Blacksmith, Ed.D
Lourdes (Lulu) Blacksmith is the Director of Governmental and Multicultural Affiars at Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove. She​​ previously served as the Director of Community Relations and district press secretary for former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman J. Dennis Hastert. Between 1987 and 2002, Blacksmith worked at Provena Mercy Medical Center in Aurora serving as Manager of Community Outreach the last three years. In 1999, she founded Compañeros en Salud/Partners in Health, a volunteer-driven coalition charged with assisting members of the Hispanic community in accessing appropriate health care and social services. She also is the founder of Language Access to Healthcare, a free community-based, health care interpreting service. Her community involvement includes serving as the chairman of the board of the Fox Valley United Way, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s golf outing, and Compañeros en Salud/Partners in Health,NFP. She also served on the advisory board of the Dominican Literacy Center and the City of Aurora Hispanic Heritage Advisory Board. Blacksmith is a graduate of Waubonsee Community College, DePaul University and Northeastern Illinois University and is currently seeking a doctorate from Benedictine University. Blacksmith has two daughters, Nikki and Stefie. She resides in Geneva with her husband Steve.

Richard J. Chroust, DDS
Dr. Richard J Chroust has practiced general dentistry in Aurora and North Aurora since 1978. A native of Warrenville, IL, Dr. Chroust graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry from Carthage College. He graduated from The University of Illinois College of Dentistry in Chicago in 1978. His practice has served Kane County residents since 1978 offering a complete range of dental services. Dr. Chroust resides in Geneva with his wife, Kathleen. He and Kathleen have three adult sons.

Diane Homan, MD
Dr. Homan is the Vice President of Clinical Innovation and the Chief Medical Informatics Officer. In this role, Dr. Homan facilitates the use of clinical informatics to advance clinical quality and patient safety and provides medical leadership for all clinical information systems that assist physicians in the delivery of patient care. Collaborating with key areas of responsibility including Care Management, Infection Prevention, Quality and Patient Safety, Dr. Homan uses data to improve quality outcomes through standardization. Monitoring metrics that contribute to Value Based Purchasing, Readmissions, Hospital Acquired Conditions while implementing Meaningful Use criteria continues to move the organization to high reliability. Dr. Homan will also continue to represent Rush-Copley at state and national conferences presenting our excellent clinical outcomes seeking to network and learn from those who represent best practices in the healthcare industry. Dr. Homan has been on the clinical faculty at Rush University for over 30 years, initiated and served as the Director of the Rush-Copley Family Medicine residency and also serves on several local Boards including the Kane County Advisory Committee.

Carmella M. Moran, PhD
Dr. Moran is the Dean of Undergraduate Studies & AU Online at Aurora University. She previously served as the Director of the School of Nursing and Associate Professor of Nursing. Dr. Moran received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing and PhD in Educational Psychology all from Loyola University Chicago. Highlights of Publications, Honors and Professional Contributions: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education Program Accreditation Site Visitor, Dunham Nursing Scholarship Steering Committee, Illinois Association of Colleges of Nursing –Secretary (2010-2013), Illinois Nurse Practice Act Task Force, Kane County Health Department Advisory Board, Manuscript Reviewer for Journal of Nursing Scholarship, McAuley Manor Advisory Board, and Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing Member.

Karin Podolski, RN, MSN, MPH
Karin Podolski has been the Director of Community Health and Outreach at Cadence Health in Geneva since 2007. In her position she oversees all activities targeted at promoting lifelong wellness in the community. She leads the development of health education programming and outreach activities that positively impact health outcomes and behaviors; ensures the effective and efficient operation of all services that fall under Community Health and Outreach, including program development, implementation and evaluation. She has served as Director of Patient Access Services, Project Manager and Coordinator since joining Delnor Community Hospital in 1997.

Dorothea Poulos, M.D.
Dorothea (Dori) Poulos, MD is a native of Chicago. After completing medical school at Harvard and family practice training at Cook County Hospital she started a medical practice in Elgin which is now a thriving practice with 5 physicians, 2 nurse practitioners and over 20 employees, serving a diverse population in the Fox Valley. She recently finished a term as President of the medical staff at Sherman Hospital, is currently the chairperson of the Patient Care Committee of Sherman Hospital, and has served in the past as the Chairperson of the Kane County Health Department Advisory Committee with her last term ending in 2007. She is very happy to be serving the County again starting in 2014. Poulos has also been involved in various capacities with several organizations in the community including the Well Child Conference, the Open Door Clinic, the Visiting Nurse Association Prenatal Clinic, and the Department of Rehabilitative Services. Her love of music is expressed by her previous involvement on the board of directors of the Elgin OPERA, and also by her playing the accordion in a local bluegrass band, the Blue Tulip Wranglers. Dr Poulos has lived in Elgin with her two children since 1994.

Bob Tanner
Bob Tanner has been President/Chief Executive Officer at Greater Elgin Family Care Center in Elgin since 2005. His education includes University of California, Los Angeles - The Anderson School of Management, the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management, University of Illinois - Chicago, and Loyola University of Chicago. Prior to joining Greater Elgin Family Care Center, Mr. Tanner served as Division Manager at Aunt Martha's Youth Service Center, as Consultant with RMT Consulting and as a Lecturer/Adjunct Faculty at University of Illinois - Chicago.

Linnea Windel, MSN, RN
Linnea Windel has served as the President and CEO of VNA Health Care in Aurora, IL, since 1999. Under her leadership, the organization has grown its operating revenue from $6 million a year to $25 million annually. The organization provides Medicare-certified Home Health and Hospice services, primary care, and public health programs.