Patient and Family Advisory Council Members

Get to know the members of the Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset! These dedicated volunteers collaborate with hospital staff and administration to influence policies, procedures and activities that will improve the quality of care we provide and the patient experience.

Jon Donnelly

Jon Donnelly

I have lived in New Jersey for my entire life and currently reside in Hunterdon County with my wife, Lillian. We have two children, Steven and Sara and two grandchildren, Finn and Owen. I have worked at Johnson & Johnson for almost 40 years and am Vice-President of Strategic Business Improvement (strategy consulting, project management and process improvement) for the North America Janssen Pharmaceuticals organization in J&J. Most of my recent work has involved providing support for J&J’s COVID-19 vaccine effort to help address the global pandemic. Previous to my current role, I have held leadership roles in Process Improvement, Manufacturing, Production Planning and Procurement. I have volunteered with RWJ – Barnabas for the last several years as a member of the Patient Family Advisory Council and Quality Board. I have also served on the Executive Advisory Council of the Association of Internal Management Consultants. I expect to retire from J&J shortly, expand my volunteer work and engage in part-time consulting roles in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry. In my spare time, I enjoy golfing, reading, and spending time with my friends and family.

Barbara Hotko

Barbara Hotko, RN, MPA

First and always a Registered Nurse, I spent the larger part of my professional career caring for patients (and their families) in the Emergency Department & Critical Care at RWJ-Somerset. I am passionate about making a difference in people’s lives, and in pursuit of having a broader impact in healthcare, I joined a consulting firm in 2002 (Studer Group) where I partnered with healthcare organizations across the USA, Canada, and Australia, to create the best possible outcomes for patient safety, quality, and satisfaction. I am both honored and blessed to bring these experiences to bear as a volunteer member of PFAC; and I feel like I am ‘back at home”. PFAC members’ viewpoints are well respected; we give a critical eye to educational brochures, recommend communication tools for staff and physicians, and share observations/opportunities from our “rounding” in the hospital. A top priority is to keep the patient (and family) first; it is very rewarding work.

Fueling my passion to make a difference is a small charity called Helping Others Pursue Education (H.O.P.E.). After a mission trip to Cambodia, my heart was drawn to the most vulnerable and impoverished children who deserve an education that will give them a better and brighter future. As a Board member, we serve to meet that need through building schools and providing the necessities for learning. Most of all, I lean on my Faith which gives me strength and courage to continue my passion to helping those in need.

Stefanie Chenkin

Stefanie Chenkin

I was raised in East Brunswick and have resided in Bridgewater since marrying my husband Michael. I’m a mom to an amazing daughter and son who enrich my life and make me proud every day. I received my B.A. at Douglass College, Rutgers University and then my M.S. at the University of Arizona where I earned my degree in speech-language pathology. My career has spanned working in public and private schools, pediatric and adult rehabilitation, private practice, as well as many years spent as an adjunct faculty member at local colleges. I am a Community Gardener at Duke Farms, a Special Olympics Volunteer, and am active with St. Joseph Church in Bound Brook where I taught religious education to students with special needs and mentor youth.

I love being a member of PFAC at RWJ Somerset in which I participate along with my husband, who was a patient in the CCU for 21 days after a cardiac arrest. As part of PFAC, I was given the opportunity to tell the story of the compassionate care our family received to the staff at the Schwartz Grand Rounds in December 2019 and then to the community in the RWJ Somerset’s Healthy Together Winter 2020 publication. I also serve on the Hand Hygiene Committee.

Michael Chenkin

Michael Chenkin

I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and, some years later, my Master’s of Social Work degree at Rutgers University. I have spent the last 35 years working with persons affected by substance use disorders, psychiatric disorders, and co-occurring disorders in every level of care except residential. In addition to my clinical work, I have been an adjunct instructor at Rutgers University Graduate School of Social Work and a faculty member at Rutgers’ Summer Institute of Alcohol and Drug Studies. Currently, I have a private practice in Somerville specializing in persons affected by a substance use disorder and survivors of major cardiac events.

On September 24, 2018 I had a cardiac arrest and was admitted to RWJ Somerset where I stayed for 21 days. Only a very small number of persons who have a cardiac arrest survive and I cannot speak highly enough of the excellent and compassionate care I received there. I will be forever grateful to every employee from Environmental Services through Hospitalist who I encountered during my stay. As a result of the care I received at RWJ Somerset I was able to return to bicycling. I did a 25 mile ride 6 months to the day of my cardiac arrest and completed a 75 mile bike fundraiser for MS 3 days short of the first anniversary of my cardiac arrest.

Helen Ribbans

Helen Ribbans

A resident of New Jersey for more than 60 years, I grew up in Somerville and graduated from Immaculata High School in 1968. I earned a BS in Medical Technology and an MBA from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Madison; in 2010, I was recognized as a Distinguished Fellow by the Regulatory Affairs Professional Society (RAPS).

During the first 13 years of my career, I worked at two of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies. In 1988, I started my own company in Somerville: B&H Consulting Services, Inc., aa global regulatory affairs company helping large and small pharma and biotech companies navigate the FDA’s investigational and approval processes for drugs and biologics. After almost 30 years, I sold the company in 2015 but continue to serve as an advisor and member of their Board of Directors.

I have served on the Women’s Olympic Rowing Committee and Immaculata High School’s Advisory Committee; I have been part of the Patient and Family Advisory Committee since March 2020. June 2021 will mark my husband Bob and my 50th wedding anniversary. We have one daughter and two grandsons. I officially retired in late 2017 but am keeping very busy traveling, gardening and birdwatching on our farm, reading, and spending quality time with family and friends.

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