Leadership Team - VA Hudson Valley Health Care System
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VA Hudson Valley Health Care System


Leadership Team

Dawn M Schaal, Director

Dawn M Schaal | 914-737-4400 Ext. 2400


Dawn M. Schaal was appointed Medical Center Director on May 24, 2020. She comes to this role from her position as the Interim Director of VA HVHCS, which she began on October 27, 2019. Prior to that, Ms. Schaal was the Associate Director from November 29, 2015. Ms. Schaal started with the VA in 1997 as a staff occupational therapist and has served in progressive positions since, including Ambulatory Care Line Business Manager, Staff Assistant to the Director, and Chief of Health Administration Service in 2013. She served in this role until January 2015, when the VA Under Secretary for Health appointed her to Interim Associate Director for a 120-day period. Ms. Schaal has also served as the Interim Group Practice Manager. Through her leadership, the medical center’s scheduling process was recognized as a program with strong integrity by the Inspector General, the Joint Commission, and former VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson. Ms. Schaal earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Binghamton University, a Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Tufts University. She completed the VISN 3 Bridges to the Future program and has earned a VA-sponsored Healthcare Data Analytics certificate from Nebraska Methodist College. She completed the Northeast Healthcare Leadership Program and VA’s Healthcare Leadership Development Program. In early 2015, Ms. Schaal received the Federal Executive Board Distinguished Service Award. Ms. Schaal can be reached at 845-831-2000, x5400, or 914-737-4400 x2400.

Gary C. Poole, Associate Director

Gary C. Poole | 845-831-2000 Ext. 2400

Associate Director

Mr. Poole joined VA Hudson Valley’s executive leadership team as the facility’s first Assistant Director in 2019. Mr. Poole served on active duty for the US Navy in the submarine service for four years, and an additional four years in inactive reserves. He graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Management and holds a Master’s degree in Human Resources Management, with distinction, from Keller Graduate School of Management. He has a Professional Human Resources certification and is a Society for Human Resources Management Certified Professional. Mr. Poole has more than 20 years of management experience both in the private sector and in VA. Mr. Poole has been with VA for nine years, serving in roles such as Recruitment and Placement Specialist, Recruitment Chief, Quality Manager, Chief, Human Resources Officer, and most recently Assistant Director.

Beverly Duncklee, Associate Director of Patient Care

Beverly Duncklee | 914-737-4400 Ext. 2486

Associate Director of Patient Care

As a magna cum laude graduate, Ms. Duncklee earned her BSN at Jamestown College, Jamestown, N.D.; her MN at the University of Washington and her PhD in communication from the State University of New York, Buffalo, where she graduated summa cum laude. She started with the VA as a resource manager in July 2003 and worked as acting program manager and, later, chief of Education and Organizational Development for the VA Hudson Valley Health Care System. She is a 2009 Network Healthcare Leadership Institute graduate and earned a Federal Executive Board award in 2006.

Felix Kunjukutty, MD, Chief of Staff

Felix Kunjukutty, MD | 914-737-4400 Ext. 2411

Chief of Staff

Dr. Kunjukutty started with VA Hudson Valley as a full-time physician under the Administrative Medicine Program in September 2011, conducting Compensation & Pension, Registry, Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES) and Occupational Health evaluations. He established the IDES program at VA Hudson Valley, a collaboration between VHA, VBA and DOD. He has also served as the Administrative Medicine Program Manager for those programs as well as the Women Veterans Program. Born and raised in New York, he follows a long family tradition of service to the VA. He completed an accelerated medical program at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago, followed by an Internal Medicine Residency at the University of Medicine and Dentistry in Newark, New Jersey. He has trained with three separate populations at Hackensack University Medical Center, East Orange VA Medical Center and University Hospital in Newark. His experience includes Hospitalist Medicine, Urgent Care, Rehabilitation, Nursing Home, Primary Care and teaching medical students and residents. Prior to his selection, he served as Associate Chief of Staff of Clinical and Diagnostic Services, where he served for two years, and as the Interim Chief of Staff for one and a half years.