Board of Directors

Mary Gearheart, President
Mary GearheartMs. Gearheart has had lengthy non-profit Board experience with Humboldt Botanical Gardens, Redwood Parks Association, and the Association of Partners for Public Lands, serving as an officer and committee member. She brings experience in strategic planning and fundraising to her role as a board member. Ms. Gearheart is retired.
Jason Barr, Vice President
Mr. Barr works for Morgan Stanley in Eureka and brings a strong financial background to the board. He is also currently serving on the board of Pacific Union School District and brings 14 years of board experience to Hospice Board of Directors.

James Bella, Jr., Treasurer
Mr. Bella comes to the Board with a strong background in finance and experience in both for-profit and non-profit organizations. He is currently employed with Open Door Community Health Centers and serves on the board of the North Coast Clinics Network. Mr. Bella’s financial knowledge compliments the business needs of Hospice as a self-sustaining organization.
Kimberly Perris, Secretary
Dr. Kimberly Perris is a registered nurse and has worked in Humboldt County for over 25 years.  In 2019, she became the director of the RN-to-BSN program at Humboldt State University (HSU), where she had previously worked as a nurse in the Student Health Center from 2004-2016.   Before her return to HSU, she was the Population Health Nursing Director at Humboldt Independent Practice Association (IPA). Dr. Perris has served on the Six Rivers Planned Parenthood Board and currently serves on the local Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Honor Society Board of directors. Dr. Perris brings to the board a passion for improving healthcare systems, patient education and access to care. She recently received a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from the University of San Francisco.
David Turner, Immediate Past President
Mr. Turner comes to the Board after serving as a Hospice volunteer with the Pet Peace of Mind program. He has board experience with Six Rivers Planned Parenthood, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California, and Planned Parenthood of Northern California. Mr. Turner works as a Human Resources Consultant and resides in Fortuna, California.
Patty Berg
Patty BergMs. Berg was the District 1 representative to the California State Assembly from 2002 to 2008, serving as the Chair of the Assembly Committee on Aging and Long Term Care. She has been a regional leader advocating for policy change in Sacramento and Washington D.C. on issues related to aging. She was the founding Executive Director of the Area 1 Agency on Aging, where she served for 20 years. She has had lengthy non-profit Board experience with Compassion & Choices, Eureka Chamber of Commerce, Six Rivers Planned Parenthood, and Humboldt Open Door Clinic. She brings experience in advocacy, legislature, fundraising, personnel and strategic planning. Ms. Berg currently works as the Principal Consultant to the State Senate Select Committee on Aging and Long-Term Care, and lives in Eureka, California.

Peter LaVallee
Mr. LaVallee is rejoining the board and served as Mayor of Eureka from 2002 to 2006 and comes to the board with over 25 years of non-profit experience with Redwood Community Action Agency.  He brings experience in public policy, fiscal management, and administration to his new role as a board member.  Mr. LaVallee is retired and lives in Eureka.
Dr. Ellen Mahoney
Dr Ellen Mahoney_webDr. Mahoney is a former interim Medical Director for Hospice of Humboldt. Since 2010 she has been the Medical Director of the Cancer Program at St. Joseph Hospital and she has served as the Medical Director for St. Joseph’s Perioperative Services since 2007. Dr. Mahoney trained as a surgeon at Stanford University of Medicine after graduating with her MD degree from there in 1981. By 1986 she had risen to become Chief Resident in Surgery at Stanford before going on to become a board-certified Fellow of the American College of Surgeons in 1993.Dr. Mahoney moved to Arcata in 2000 and opened her own practice in breast cancer surgery. She speaks frequently on breast cancer to community groups and serves as a medical editor and expert contributor to the website of the Susan Love Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of breast cancer through innovation, education, research, and advocacy.
Anne Pierson
Anne Pierson_webMs. Pierson is the current President of L&A Enterprises, LLC and the founder and former owner of the Art Center in Old Town Eureka. She is a volunteer chaplain at St. Joseph Hospital with more than 15 years of experience in this role. Her extensive nonprofit work includes board membership and committee work with the Humane Society, Christ Episcopal Church Vestry, and the Diocese of Northern California Episcopal Church. Ms. Pierson will become an ordained deacon with the Episcopal Church in August 2016.
Mark Provan
Mr. Provan brings to the board an extensive 20 years of experience in the healthcare industry. A licensed Occupational Therapist, he currently serves as the Regional Vice-President of Post-Acute Services with St. Joseph Health. Mr. Provan’s depth of knowledge and experience as an administrator for physical therapy, hospice, and home health programs, gives the board a unique perspective.
Gail Saunders
Ms. Saunders was raised in Trinidad by third generation Humboldt County parents who instilled in her the importance of giving back to one’s community.  She retired from her career in real estate management to focus on her parents’ failing health.  Ms. Saunders has an extensive background volunteering in community organizations and has served on many boards, the most recent being St. Joseph Foundation, St. Joseph Community Board and The Ingomar Club.Ms. Saunders was an active member of the Foster Parent Association, leading her to adopt two children who had been placed in her care. Her interest in Hospice grew when both her parents passed in the care of Hospice, her father at home and her mother in the Ida Emmerson Hospice House.  She was able to observe and experience first-hand the exceptional care and compassion that her parents received.  Ms. Saunders believes strongly in the mission of Hospice and their care for families in need.

Jerome Simone
Jerry Simone_webMr. Simone joins the Board with over 50 years of experience working in the healthcare industry. In addition to serving as the CEO of United Indian Health Services for 36 years, he has a Master’s Degree from USC in Public Health Administration and has worked in patient care clinics, hospitals, public health departments, and the United States Navy Medical Corp. His extensive board membership involvement includes the Humboldt Bay Rowing Association, Food for People, Community Health Alliance, Community Health Advisory Board, Mad River Community Hospital, Westhaven Volunteer Fire Department, and Trinidad Volunteer Fire Department. Now retired, Mr. Simone is currently using his talents as a volunteer EMT and by serving as a member of various boards in the healthcare system.