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About Us

Directors

Suzanne Cashman, ScD, MS 

Formally trained in health services research, evaluation and administration, Suzanne Cashman has spent the past forty years of her professional career teaching graduate courses to a wide range of health professions students, conducting community-based evaluation research, developing partnerships aimed at helping communities improve their health, and advancing interprofessional education. Suzanne is Professor and Director of Community Health in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. In 2000, shortly after coming to UMMS, Suzanne founded and began co-leading UMass’s Rural Health Scholars Pathway. Currently, she serves as the Mass AHEC Network’s evaluation specialist.

Linda Cragin, MS

The director of the MassAHEC Network, a federal grant in the UMass Department
of Family Medicine and Community Health from the HRSA Bureau of Health Workforce; UMass has maintained the grant since 1977.  AHECs (Area Health Education Centers) are a national network of academic-community partnerships responding to the challenge of improving access to quality health care for underserved populations by supporting community based learning opportunities
for health professions students. 

Janet Hale, PhD, RN, CS, FNP

Dr. Janet Fraser Hale is a professor of nursing and family medicine and community health and the Associate Dean for Interprofessional and Community Partnerships
in the Graduate School of Nursing of the University of Massachusetts Medical School.  As a critical care nurse and subsequently as a family nurse practitioner in the military, much of her focus has been with cardiac patients and efforts towards interprofessional and patient education to support wellness, health promotion and disease prevention.  Since joining academia, she has been involved with interprofessional education initiatives with medical and graduate nursing students working with medically underserved patients and populations in primary care and community settings to promote health and wellness. For over 20 years, she has co-lead faculty working with both professions involved with community service-learning initiatives caring for some of the most vulnerable and diverse populations initially in Washington, DC and more recently in Worcester and Central MA.

Steve Martin, MD, MEd

Associate Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and boarded in Family Medicine and Addiction Medicine.  After four years with the National Health Service Corps in a community health center and federal prison medical center, Steve’s clinical site since 2009 has been the rural Barre Family Health Center.  

Nicholas Hajj, MD

As a student at UMass Medical School, Nick Hajj developed his passion for rural medicine from his experiences with the Rural Health Scholars program.  He then went on to the Barre Family Health Center for his training in the UMass Worcester Family Medicine residency program, serving as chief resident before completing his residency and board certification in Family Medicine.  He now continues at the Barre Family Health Center practicing full-spectrum Family Medicine including primary care, inpatient medicine, and obstetrics.