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Friday, Mar 27, 2015

Health administrator still juggling three jobs


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Four months after she was hired to be the full-time administrator of the Hernando County Health Department, Robin Wright continues to divide her time between here and two other health departments in Florida.

Wright said she had hoped to divest herself of those extra duties by January, but it is taking longer than expected to find permanent administrators in those two counties.

Wright, who makes $98,261 annually in Hernando County, is the interim administrator for Citrus and Putnam counties. She makes an extra 10 percent, or about $9,800, for those extra job responsibilities.

Wright said she spends an average of at least one day a week in Citrus County and takes care of business in Putnam County via teleconferencing or telephone.

When she’s not able to be here, Wright said her leadership team is competent to look after operations and if an emergency arises, she is only about 30 miles away at the Citrus County Health Department in Lecanto.

Not only that, but she, like all Florida health department administrators, are required to be on standby around the clock, she said.

Ann-Gayl Ellis, the health department’s public information officer, said Kathleen Sauskojus, who had been filling in as interim administrator before Wright was hired, is also on the premises full-time.

Despite Wright’s divided attentions, operations at the Hernando County facility have been running smoothly, Ellis said.

“She has been interviewing candidates for both of (the other county) positions the last month so hopefully, we will (soon) have her full-time,” she said.

Ellen Lodgek, administrative secretary with the Citrus County Health Department, said four or five people were recently interviewed but the process of hiring a permanent administrator continues.

Lodgek said Wright has been the interim administrator there since the last person left in August 2012.

Wright replaced former Hernando County Health Administrator Phil Spence, who retired last September and officially left Nov. 30.

Spence’s name and phone number remains on the voice mail recording into the current health administrator’s office, an oversight that Ellis said will be corrected.

Wright, 47, has a bachelor’s degree from Georgia Southwestern University and a master’s degree in accounting from the University of North Florida.

Wright, who lives in Pasco County, plans to dig deeper into the health department’s recently completed community needs assessment, which identifies the wants, needs and goals of the agency.

The next step is to put together a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) for the department.

Wright said the Hernando County Health Department, with about 84 employees, is a great team and she looks forward to the day when it is the only facility under her auspices.

“Hopefully soon,” she said.

(352) 544-5290

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