Jean Turner named to NIHD Board of Directors
North Bishop resident Jean Turner was named to the Northern Inyo Healthcare District (NIHD)
Board of Directors during the board’s regular monthly meeting Wednesday evening.
Turner, who retired from the County of Inyo this past June, was one of three applicants to file for
the recent Zone 2 vacancy. An Ad Hoc Committee of current board directors, Dr. John
Ungersma and Mary Mae Kilpatrick, interviewed three applicants before recommending Turner’s
appointment to remaining board members MC Hubbard and Pete Watercott. The
recommendation was approved 4-0.
In presenting Turner as the nominee, Kevin S. Flanigan, MD MBA, the Chief Executive Officer
of NIHD, described the screening process and the difficulty the committee members had in
selecting between Turner, Jane Thompson and past board president Denise Hayden. He noted
that the committee spent hours on the decision as all three were eminently qualified and each
had her own strengths.
With Turner’s appointment, the NIHD board is once again whole with five members following the
October resignation of Phil Hartz. Under current election law, Turner’s appointment will last until
the November 2018 election. At that time, there will be an election for the Zone 2 seat and the
winner will serve the final two years of Hartz’ term. At the end of those two years, an election for
a full four-year term will take place.
"I truly am honored to have been appointed by such a knowledgeable and effective governing
body,” Turner said Thursday morning. “I have appreciated the current leadership style and the
incredible employees in the Northern Inyo Healthcare District, and look forward to being part of
a great team serving our local community."
In public service her entire adult career, Turner moved to Bishop in 1986 to work in local public
human services. Thirty-one years later, in June of 2017, she retired from almost fourteen years
as the Director of the Inyo County Health and Human Services Department.
Following in the footsteps of her mother who has spent her retirement years serving on various
boards and commissions, Turner knew that the call to continue serving the public would remain
strong. Vowing to give herself six-to- 12 months before committing to new endeavors, she spent
her summer and fall hosting family and friends in a variety of outdoor adventures including a
High Sierra pack trip, camping, hiking, swimming, climbing, biking, and geology tours. She
particularly enjoyed having her two grandchildren come to “Camp Grandma’s,” and alternately
visiting them in San Diego where they live with their dad (Turner’s one child) and his wife.
The opportunity to serve on the NIHD Board presented itself just shy of her six-month mark in
retirement. Remembering her late husband, Dan, whose CT scan at NIH more than 10 years
ago uncovered what turned out to be terminal throat cancer, she felt the NIHD Board vacancy
might provide an opportunity for her to give back to her community and to the very hospital that
diagnosed and helped extend the life of her beloved Dan.
Additionally, she thought her leadership experience in public health and human services, along
with her service on the Governing Board of California's 35-county consortium for insuring
medically indigent adults, could be a good fit for a governing role at NIHD.
The NIHD Board also elected its slate of Board Officers for 2018: Dr. John Ungersma will serve
as President; MC Hubbard as Vice President; Mary Mae Kilpatrick as Secretary; Jean Turner as
Treasurer; and Pete Watercott as Director-At- Large.