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BVHS Announces Changes to Board


The Blanchard Valley Health System (BVHS) Board of Trustees and the Blanchard Valley Health Foundation are announcing several recent changes to its members and officers.

The BVHS Board has appointed Thomas Lause, Kay Chester, and Christian Steiner, MD, as its newest trustees.

Lause retired in 2022 as vice president of business affairs, chief financial officer, and treasurer for the University of Findlay. He previously worked for Cooper Tire & Rubber Company for 35 years, retiring as vice president of treasury and tax and treasurer. His leadership was key to the Findlay-based business growing into a top 10 global tire manufacturer. He led Cooper's European Operations and shorter-term assignments at the company's Asian operations in China. As Cooper's vice president and treasurer, overseeing global treasury operations and risk management, he led the design and execution of Cooper's global debt and capital structure, negotiated global insurance coverage for the company's risk profile, and was responsible for Cooper’s global tax. He served as vice president of finance and global operations controller from 2002-2014.

He earned a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Bowling Green State University (BGSU). He is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame’s Executive Leadership Program and holds a Certificate of Public Accounting from the State of Ohio.

Chester graduated from The Ohio State University and is a retired dietitian with experience in hospitals and long-term care. She joins the Board as the new president of the BVHS Auxiliary. Chester volunteers at the Auxiliary’s Nearly New Shop and has been a BVHS volunteer for nine years.

Dr. Steiner, a Bluffton native, began his medical career as a state-tested nurse’s aide at Mennonite Memorial Home at age 16. He went on to work as an orderly at the Findlay Surgery Center. He became an EMT at age 18, working for Hanco EMS and the village of Bluffton. As a lieutenant on the Ada EMS, he received the Star of Life from Ohio Emergency Medical Services. He was also part of the emergency response in Slidell, Louisiana, in the weeks following Hurricane Katrina.

After undergraduate studies at Ohio Northern University, he attended medical school at Sint Eustatius School of Medicine in the Netherlands Antilles. He completed his psychiatry residency at Case Western Reserve-MetroHealth in Cleveland, where he served as academic chief resident, specializing in rural mental health with additional training in intellectual disabilities and medical ethics. Dr. Steiner has been on the BVHS staff since 2014 and has been director of Orchard Hall and the Chair of the psychiatry department since 2018. In 2020, he completed the Yale Sumner Bioethics training program.

The Blanchard Valley Health Foundation has also welcomed a new member of its Board of Directors. Anna L. Schroeder is an attorney at Eastman & Smith, LTD. in the firm’s Business Law and Estate Planning, Trust and Probate practice groups. She is serving her first term on the BVHF board and the Development Committee. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from the University of Toledo in 2017 and her Juris Doctorate from The Ohio State University in 2020. She is an engaged community leader and a recipient of the 20 Under 40 Leadership Award.

In addition, three individuals were chosen to serve on the BVHS Quality Committee. They include Karim Baroudi, MPH, REHS, health commissioner, Hancock Public Health; Timothy J. Brennan, MBA, operations administrator, international quality and global consulting, Mayo Clinic; and Jigna Janani, MD, who is now vice president of the organization’s medical staff.

“We are happy to welcome these new members to Blanchard Valley Health System. The experience and guidance of these individuals will help shape a vision that strengthens the organization’s ability to provide quality healthcare to our community each and every day,” said Myron D. Lewis, president and chief executive officer of BVHS. “BVHS will greatly benefit from their knowledge.”

As president of the Auxiliary, Chester replaces Past President Cathy Lishawa on the Board of Trustees. As Medical Staff President, Dr. Steiner replaces Allison Westcott, MD, on the board.

Lewis thanked Lishawa and Westcott for their time serving on the Board of Trustees.

“Serving on the board is an immense and passionate commitment, with board members dedicating much of their time and energy to guide BVHS. This dedication is appreciated, and I am truly grateful to our outgoing board members for their commitment.”

To learn more about Blanchard Valley Health System and the services the organization offers to the region, please visit

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