About Us

Our Service Area

Vision Statement

          The Healthy Community Alliance will be recognized throughout the region as a preeminent rural health network, committed to health promotion, disease prevention, and building quality of life. Our hallmarks will be the innovation, initiative, and teamwork of our communities and our ability to anticipate and effectively respond to change.

Core Values

  • Facilitates partnerships that increase the availability and accessibility of services in government, health, education, human services, the business sector, and the faith community.

  • Recognizes the unique environment of rural communities to support collaboration and share resources.

  • Honors initiative, innovation, individual and organizational development.


  • Is prepared to support rural leadership development as a means to address immediate  concerns with fresh, interactive, and compelling approaches to rural problem solving.


  • Acknowledges that daily success and mistakes are seen as part of the growth process.

  • Respects cultural diversity among rural people.


  • Provides broad-based community outreach.

  • Encourages the involvement of all citizens and organizations both profit and non-profit as a means to stay connected to one another and capable of appropriate and powerful responses to  rural issues.

  •  Embraces total well being.

  •  Uses an inclusive community-based process.

  •  Empowers rural residents.

 Encourages a sense of ethics and trust among our partners. 



Community Value of HCA

HCA impacts the area just as any other business entity that employs people and purchases goods and services. For example, HCA received $239,016 from NYS in 2012. We generated an additional $986,172 across all programs (including Academy and Community Place). That means for every dollar the Alliance received from the NYS Office of Rural Health we generated an additional $5.12 back into the community!!


Jobs created

HCA has grown from 2 paid staff members in 1996 to eight FTEs and eight PTEs for a total of 16.


A Message from

     the Director           

Our commitment to the rural communities we serve guides everything we do.
Eating healthy, creating an environment that encourages physical activity, giving children and families the resources they need to succeed and live well, helping them access health care services and informing about what they can do to prevent or manage chronic conditions  are all important priorities for the Alliance.
The Board of Directors

The Healthy Community Alliance is led by a volunteer Board of Directors. Board members represent the service area and include local leaders in business, church,

education and health.

Martha Kemsley, Ph.D. RN, President


   Martha Kemsley, Ph.D. RN has served as the Alliance Board president since its 1996 incorporation. She is a retired professor of nursing of the State University of New York at Buffalo. Child health Nursing is her specialty area where she practiced in many roles including staff nurse, nurse practitioner, and educator. Health and wellness has been a focus of her practice and teaching. Dr. Kemsley formerly served as the Director of Nurses at bertrand Chaffee Hospital. Marty has lived in Glenwood, New York for over 42 years. 

Jeffrey Bowen, Ed.D., Vice President/Treasurer

Jeffrey Bowen, Ed.D. is the retired Superintendent at Pioneer Central School
and serves as Vice President of the Board. He holds a Bachelors Degree from
Williams College, a Master of Arts from Johns Hopkins and Doctorate from the
University of Albany. Dr. Bowen resides in Yorkshire.
Barbara J. Hastings, Secretary
Barbara J. Hastings of Allegany is the retired Public Health Director for the Cattaraugus County Department of Health. She holds a Masters Degree in Community Health Nursing Administration and BS in Nursing. Prior to being named Public Health Director in 2002, Ms. Hastings has held various positions at the Health Department beginning in 1976. She presently serves on several community boards and has been actively involved in numerous professional and community
activities over the years.

Scott A. Butler

Scott Butler is Vice President of Marketing and Community Relations for the Lake Erie Regional Health System of NY.

Steven Buffa

     Steven Buffa is the labratory manager at Bertrand Chaffee Hospital in Springville, NY.  He earned a BS in Medical Technology and Environmental Biology at SUNY Fredonia.  He is a Second Degree Black Belt and instructor in Isshin-Ryu Karate.  Steven resides in Hamburg, NY. 



Derrik Decker

Derrik Decker is a Technology Professor at SUNY Fredonia and was formerly the Director of Technology at Gowanda Central School. In addition to his many years of teaching experience, Derrik also has 19 years concentrated experience in computer science. In addition to a BA in Mathematics and Chemistry, he has studied at St. Bonaventure University, SUNY Fredonia and Niagara University

Linda Hoffman

Ms. Linda Hoffman attended Brandeis University where she met her husband, a local pediatrician Martin T. Hoffman. She has lived in the Springville area since 1976. She and Dr. Hoffman are the parents of three sons. Mrs. Hoffman has been very active in the community. She has been a member of the Springville Griffith Institute board since 1982 and the Erie 2 B.O.C.E.S. board since 1989. She has served on the executive board of Springville Center for the Arts and the Erie County Association of School boards.

Rick Jemison

Rick is an area businessman and works closely with
the Seneca Nation of Indians.

Bruce Nisbet, LMSW


Bruce Nisbet, LMSW is president and CEO of Spectrum Human Services. Mr. Nisbet brings a wealth of of experience to the board in the areas of community mental health and substance abuse, non-profit management, funding and public policy. A NYS licensed master social worker, Nisbet received his Master of Social Work degree from SUNY Buffalo in 1974. Prior to his current position at Spectrum, Human Services, Mr. Nisbet served in leadership roles at Children's Home of Wyoming Conference in Binghamton and Gateway-Longview in Williamsville. In adddition to the publication of several peer-reviewed articles in professional journals, Mr. Nisbet has presented at numerous national and international conferences on issues related to children's mental health.

Erin Gaken
Ms. Gaken earned a BA in Psychology from the University of Dayton. She has
extensive social services experience and has held positions of provider Liaison
and Connections program Director for Hospice Chautauqua County.


Donald Gernatt
Donald Gernatt is a native of the Gowanda-Collins area. Don currently resides
in Springville with his family where he operates a farm. He holds a degree in Business Management and Geology from SUNY Fredonia.

Dennis Tobolski

Dennis Tobolski is a retired Cattaraugus County Attorney. He also served

as attorney for the City of Dunkirk and is a past president of the New York State County Attorneys Association. Mr. Tobolski is very active in youth soccer activities. He resides in Lakeview. 




Reverend Gary Schindler

Rev. Schindler serves as Vicar of St. Paul’s
Episcopal Church in Springville. He is also a pastoral counselor for the
Pastoral Counseling Center of the Niagara Frontier and Hospice Chaplain for
Chautauqua County Hospice. Rev. Schindler is active in a variety of community
initiatives. He holds a Master of Divinity degree from the Episcopal Divinity
School and a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education (Chemistry) - SUNY
Jeannene M. Wagner
Jeannene is an administator on special assignment at Pioneer Central School District in Yorkshire, NY.  She holds a masters degree in education from St. Bonaventure University.  She resides in Springville, NY. 
Kevin D. Watkins, M.D., Ph.D.
A native of the Chicago, Illinois area, Dr. Watkins is the Public Health Director for the Cattaraugus County Health Department, a position he has held since November 2009. He received his medical degree from Chicago Medical School and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Illinois. Dr. Watkins is a member of numerous local and national organizations and committees. He currently resides in Olean.







The Healthy Community Alliance is fortunate to enjoy the support of a diverse range of funders from
the public and private sectors in addition to a number of management services contracts.