The Board of Directors is made up of community leaders, medical professionals and executives who are committed to fighting heart disease and stroke across Central Texas. New board members serve one two-year term with the option of serving two additional terms. The Austin AHA Board has engaged leaders from several Austin organizations to join forces and make a positive health impact on the community, by supporting AHA events to raise dollars and awareness, by training people in Hands-Only CPR, by advocating for public policies that aim to improve heart health and patient care in Central Texas, as well as implementing many other educational initiatives.
Dr. Susan Johnson – Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Dr. Susan Johnson has leveraged her education and experience to build a stellar public service career. She has directed the activities of over 22 programs impacting the lives and well-being of Texans across the state. Managing budgets of over $25 million, Susan has established goals and objectives for various programs and advocated for resources (financial and personnel) to support those programs. Dr. Johnson has served the great state of Texas as Human Resource Manager, Director, Associate Commissioner and is currently the organizational Development and Training Manager for the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. Susan has a special passion for students and young professionals, making herself available to those seeking internships and first employment after college.
Thomas Chavez – Baylis Medical
Thomas Chavez was named the Vice President of Global Sales for Baylis Medical in 2017. Baylis Medical is a Canadian medical device company focused on providing access solutions for cardiovascular procedures. The company is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Prior to that, Tom held leadership positions within various medical device companies. He has a healthcare career that spans more than 25 years, with over 20 of those years focused on cardiovascular health. Mr. Chavez has a Master of Business Administration from the College of Santa Fe. He previously served in numerous volunteer roles with the AHA and is thrilled to re-engage with our mission and work.
John Recker- KPMG
John D. Recker is the Office Managing Partner at KPMG LLP. As an audit partner, John works with companies ranging from early stage startups to Fortune 500 companies with global operations. As the Office Managing Partner, John’s responsibilities include helping to lead the business development efforts across all service lines and markets. Additionally, John oversees office community involvement and employee engagement activities, where during his tenure the office has seen workplace giving increase substantially. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Indiana University.
Virginia Visser – Workplace Resource LLC (Incoming AHA Board Chair, July 2021)
Virginia Visser is Principal and Managing Member of Workplace Resource, a business that provides high performance interior work places. Workplace Resource products, planning and design services support interior environments ranging from corporate offices to clinical healthcare environments, and higher education institutions to government agencies. The Austin Business Journal 2020 list of women-owned businesses recognized Workplace Resource with a #1 ranking. Virginia and her husband, Steve Visser, became owners in 2008 after long tenures with Herman Miller, a premier contract furniture company.
Erich Sanchack – Digital Realty
Erich J. Sanchack serves as Executive Vice President, Operations, for Digital Realty, with responsibility for global portfolio operations, global construction, colocation and interconnection service implementation, cybersecurity, government affairs, and supply chain operations. A former U.S. Marine Corps officer, Erich formerly served on the board of directors for the American Heart Association for the Greater Washington Region. Erich also has been included among the top 100 most influential people in the greater Washington, DC area. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Pennsylvania State University.
Meet Austin’s Community Impact Director – Catalina Berry
Catalina Berry is passionate about inspiring healthy living, community and giving back in her personal and professional life. After being an active volunteer for the American Heart Association for over ten years, Catalina is now the Community Impact Director for the American Heart Association Central Texas Market. Her work in her current role is around policy, systems, and environmental changes in the community with a focus in health equity. Growing up bi-cultural and bilingual has helped shape Catalina into who she is today as she strives to be a positive influence in the community.