Judith Bjorndal and Susan Kornblatt Idell Join Sonoma Valley Health Care District Board

Dec 14, 2020 | Sonoma Valley Hospital News

The Sonoma Valley Health Care District board officially welcomed new members Dr. Judith Bjorndal and Susan Kornblatt Idell at the monthly board meeting on December 10. They replace Jane Hirsch and Sharon Nevins who have retired from the board after eight and nine years respectively.

“We are fortunate to have new members with the healthcare experience and expertise that Judy and Susan bring,” said Joshua Rymer, Board Chair. “Jane and Sharon have set the bar very high with their excellent work on the board, and I am confident Judy and Susan will quickly contribute in many important ways.”

Rymer said Judy is a retired physician who has considerable healthcare experience locally and understands the Sonoma Valley well, and Susan has extensive experience in geriatric healthcare, as well as serving for the past seven years on the hospital’s Quality Committee. Both begin four year terms.

The board confirmed member assignments at the meeting. Joshua Rymer assumed the position of Board Chair, a position he has held before. Michael Mainardi will serve as First Vice Chair and Susan Kornblatt Idell as Second Vice Chair. Bill Boerum will serve as Treasurer and Judith Bjorndal as Secretary.

Biographical Information

Judith Bjorndal is a retired physician who moved to Sonoma to begin her private pediatric practice in 1979. In addition to this she was an addiction medicine specialist and has been medical director at drug and alcohol facilities. She was Medical Director at the Sonoma Developmental Center for ten years, until her retirement in 2010.  She graduated from Occidental College in Los Angeles with a BA and Wayne State University Medical School with an MD.  She completed her pediatric residency training at Oakland Children’s Hospital, serving as Chief Resident her final year.  She also holds an MBA from St. Mary’s College.

Dr. Bjorndal has been active in the non-profit community as a former board member and president of the Boys and Girls Club, and supports many other organizations as well, such as La Luz, Sonoma Valley Hospital Foundation (she was presented with the Foundation’s Pulse Award in 2011), and the Sonoma Valley Fund. She is also a founding member of Impact 100.

Susan Kornblatt Idell is a social gerontologist who designs and develops curricula for health professionals in the field of aging. Her work at both UCSF and On Lok in San Francisco focused on the training of practicing health professionals and trainees to provide care for the aging population. She has an emphasis on the development and functioning of geriatric interdisciplinary teams who provide care for the frail elderly, and during her career has published numerous articles and book chapters on the subject. Ms. Kornblatt Idell and her husband, Richard, moved to Sonoma in 2010. 

She has served on the boards of several non-profit organizations including the American Society on Aging, the San Francisco Chapter of the American Heart Association, Family Caregiver Alliance, and Women for WineSense. She has a BA and MA from San Francisco State University and also studied at Boston University and the University of Montreal. She has served on the Hospital’s Quality Committee since 2013, on which she continues to serve. 

About the District

The Sonoma Valley Health Care District was formed in 1946 to provide healthcare services to Sonoma Valley residents. The Hospital is governed under the bylaws of the District with oversight by a publicly elected Board of Directors. Directors serve four-year terms, with elections taking place during general elections for local, state or national offices. Monthly board meetings are open and public comment is welcomed. Meeting Information is available at sonomavalleyhospital.org/Health Care District. The District’s mission is to maintain, improve and restore the health of everyone in the District, which encompasses the entire Sonoma Valley except for Kenwood.