Dartmouth Graduate Picked  To Lead Vt. Medical Society

Valley News Correspondent
Published: 7/23/2017 1:03:13 AM
Modified: 7/23/2017 1:03:14 AM

Montpelier — Jessa Barnard, of Montpelier, a 2002 graduate of Dartmouth College, has been appointed the next executive vice president of the Vermont Medical Society, the state’s largest physician’s organization.

She will replace Paul Harrington, who is retiring after 15 years of leading VMS.

“Vermont already has the reputation of being one of the best states in the nation to receive medical care,” Barnard said in a news release. “I am committed to working with VMS members and leadership to ensure that Vermont remains a leader in providing health care coverage, health care services and an environment in which physicians can enjoy the practice medicine and focus on caring for their patients.”

When she takes over, on Dec. 1, Barnard will represent the interests of the Vermont Medical Society’s 2,000 physician members and their patients before the General Assembly, administration, and regulatory and public policy boards throughout the state.

“At this critical juncture in the evolution of our state and national health care systems, strong leadership from the physician, physician assistant and other health professional communities is an absolute must if we are going to reform the delivery of care in a way that protects our patients’ well-being,” said Wendy Davis, president of the Vermont Medical Society. “We were fortunate to have a very strong field of candidates for the position, but Jessa really rose to the top with her extensive health care policy expertise and familiarity with the state and its physician community.  The society is going to be in good hands with her as its leader.”

Barnard, who holds a law degree from Stanford University School of Law, has served as the society’s general counsel and vice president for policy since March 2016. She previously served as policy specialist at the society from 2002 to 2005, and spent four years with the Maine Medical Association, most recently as its associate general counsel.

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