Leadership Team - Northport VA Medical Center
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Northport VA Medical Center


Leadership Team

Antonio Sanchez, Executive Director

Antonio Sanchez | 631-261-4400 Ext. 2749

Executive Director

Dr. Antonio Sánchez was appointed the executive director of the Northport VA Medical Center in Northport, New York in May, 2019. Previously, he served as acting director of the VA Caribbean Healthcare System in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Dr. Sánchez has extensive experience in health care administration, development, and supervision. His past positions include: acute care line supervisor of mental and behavioral healthcare services; chief of psychiatry; deputy chief of staff; interim chief of staff; and chief of staff. Dr. Sánchez has been a board-certified psychiatrist through the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology since 2005, and maintains a full and unrestricted license to practice medicine and healthcare administration. He is a graduate from the University of Puerto Rico, School of Medicine and completed his postgraduate psychiatry training in 1998. He also possesses a Masters Degree in Healthcare Services Administration and became a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives – a distinction uncommon among physicians. Dr. Sanchez is also a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association for his accomplishments in the psychiatry field. He began his VA career at the VA Caribbean Healthcare System as staff psychiatrist in August 2000. He has also graduated from the CDL program and the Healthcare Leadership Institute.

Charlene Thomesen, Chief of Staff

Charlene Thomesen | 631-261-4400 Ext. 2785

Chief of Staff

Dr. Thomesen graduated from Mount Sinai School of Medicine and completed a residency in Psychiatry at LIJ Medical Center. She began her career in Northport in 1986 as a Contract Psychiatrist. In 1989 Dr. Thomesen became a full time attending Psychiatrist at Northport VAMC. She was also an attending Psychiatrist Stony Brook University Hospital. From 1995 – 1998, Dr. Thomesen served as Acting Chief, Psychiatry Service in Northport and officially became Chief of Psychiatry/ACOS Mental Health in 1998 to present. Dr. Thomesen is a member of the Mental Health Executive Board – VISN 2, The VISN 2 Suicide Prevention Workgroup, Mental Health Council-chair, Crisis Prevention Committee-chair, Patient Care Review Committee and the Professional Standards Board. Dr. Thomesen is Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Adult Psychiatry with Subspecialty Board Certification in Forensic Psychiatry. Dr. Thomesen spearheaded the project, The Unified Behavioral Health Center for Military Veterans and their Families. Founded in 2012, this is a first of its kind, collaborative effort between a VA Medical Center (Northport) and a nonprofit health system (North Shore LIJ Health System) to evaluate, support and treat military personnel and their family members. In 2013 Dr. Thomesen was named Women of the Year by the Northport Women’s Program.

Colleen Luckner, MBA, Associate Director

Colleen Luckner, MBA | 631-261-4400 Ext. 2737

Associate Director

Colleen Luckner is the Associate Director at the Northport VA Medical Center. Prior to her current assignment, she served as the VISN Network Compliance and Business Integrity Officer since 2011. She began her VA career in 2007 at the Northport VA Medical Center as the Chief of Health Information Management and then served as the Acting Chief of the Business Office. Ms. Luckner graduated from St. Joseph’s College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Administration and a certification in Health Information Management. She also graduated from Dowling College with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.

Catherine Napoli, Associate Director for Patient Care Services

Catherine Napoli | 631-261-4400 Ext. 2756

Associate Director for Patient Care Services

Catherine Napoli holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Molloy College, and a Master’s from Stony Brook University. She has completed the course work for her DBA (ABD) from Walden University. She is a graduate of the Bridges program, the Northeast Health Care Leadership Institute and Nurse Executive Institute program, and is also a certified Rehabilitation Nurse. Prior to her time at Northport, Mrs. Napoli simultaneously served two hospitals in Montrose and Castle Point as Associate Chief Nurse for Geriatrics and Extended Care, ushering in substantial improvements to the Hudson Valley Health Care System. While at Northport, she has employed her expertise across a wide spectrum of care, has been a nurse manager for multiple departments, and served as the surgical coordinator in the surgical department. She served as the associate chief nurse for acute medicine/surgery, actively engaging in customer service activities and advancing clinical practice for the nursing staff. Mrs. Napoli has received several awards for outstanding performance and achievements and was nominated for Nassau/ Suffolk Nurse Excellence.