CenCal is guided by a team of individuals diverse in their healthcare, Medi-Cal and leadership experience, but united in a single goal: Being a national model of health care delivery, recognized for excellence in care and service, through improving the quality of healthcare in the Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo County communities.
Bob Freeman is the CEO of CenCal Health. CenCal Health is one of the first, and now oldest Medicaid-only Managed Care Plan in the nation. In his capacity as CEO, Bob is responsible for ensuring ongoing, efficient operations of CenCal Health, overseeing all operational decisions of CenCal Health's programs; ensuring the plan's continued success through effective planning for the future; oversight of contract negotiation, settling managerial disputes and prudent management of financial resources.
In his previous role as Deputy CEO, Bob's responsibilities included that of Compliance Officer, Chair of the plan's quality improvement and compliance oversight committees; the coordination all government affairs, public affairs and program development activities; and performing a significant role in the day to day administration of the health plan.
Bob also serves on the Board of Directors of the Local Health Plans of California (LHPC), the Community Action Commission (CAC), and serves as the Chair of Pacific Health Centers. (PHC) He is also the president of the Doorway to Health Foundation - the non-profit foundation that administers the "Healthy Kids" program in Santa Barbara County.
Before coming to the then Santa Barbara Regional Health Authority in 1993, Bob spent ten years in Sacramento serving in various state government capacities, including five years as an Assistant Cabinet Secretary for Business, Transportation and Housing. In this position, he coordinated special projects in economic and international trade development. These types of projects included directing California's participation in international expositions (world's fairs), and serving as executive director of a non-profit corporation encouraging expanded California trade ties and business development with the European community.
Paul Jaconette, Chief Operations Officer
Paul Jaconette joined CenCal Health in August 2011 coming from Sansum Clinic, the largest nonprofit, multi-specialty healthcare organization between Los Angeles and San Francisco. He oversaw the operations of 18 locations, 200 healthcare providers and 1000 employees and was employed there for 18 years.
Mr. Jaconette is active in our community and a member of professional associations. He serves on the boards of the California Association of Physician Groups, Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics, Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce and the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce. He is also an active member of the Medical Group Management Association, American College of Medical Practice Administrators and the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara.
Mr. Jaconette earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California Santa Barbara and a Master of Health Care Administration degree from Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. He completed an Administrative Fellowship at Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, Utah.
David Ambrose, Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Ambrose holds a B.A. Degree in Economics/Mathematics from the University of California Santa Barbara and is Certified Public Accountant licensed in the State of California. He is a member of the California Society of CPA's and of the Healthcare Financial Management Association.
Before joining CenCal Health, Mr. Ambrose's healthcare career included being a Medicare auditor responsible for determining Medicare reimbursement to individual hospitals and the Controller of Verdugo Hills Hospital in Glendale, California. Outside CenCal Health, Mr. Ambrose is active in endurance sports, such as marathons and triathlons, and has finished multiple Ironman Triathlons and a 50 mile trail ultramarathon. He is married with two young daughters.
Bill Cioffi, Chief Information Officer
Bill Cioffi joined CenCal Health as the Chief Information Officer in August 2019. In his new role, he's responsible for providing leadership and vision for the IT Department. With more than 25 years of Information Technology experience in health care, public safety and military systems, Bill brings a valuable mix of technology and leadership to his role. In addition to leading CenCal Health in their quest to deliver quality service to their members and providers, Bill volunteers for the College of Information Management Healthcare Executive’s national Opioid Task Force and is currently co-chair of the Education Sub-Committee.
Prior to his tenure at CenCal Health, Mr. Cioffi served as the CIO for North Sonoma County Healthcare District, Sacramento / Sierra Regional Operations Manager for Sutter Health, IT Infrastructure Manager for Radiological Associates of Sacramento and CIO for 95th Security Forces at Edwards AFB. Bill earned his Master’s degree from California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks in Public Policy and Administration. He's also a Certified Healthcare Chief Information Officer (CHCIO) from the College of Information Management Healthcare Executives.
Karen Hord, MD, FAAFP, DABAM, Interim Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Karen Hord joined CenCal in January 2018 as Medical Director. She is a native of Colorado, and relocated to the Central Coast of California about 15 years ago. She is Board Certified in Family Medicine and Addiction Medicine. She trained at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, earning a degree in Biochemistry, Doctor of Medicine, certified in Family Medicine, and completed a national post-graduate fellowship in Primary Care Research and Masters of Science in Public Health.
She spent several years in academics, teaching Physician Assistant Students, Medical Students, and Residents in University Hospitals in Denver. She then moved to Southwest CO to serve the Southern Ute Indian Population and spent 7 years working in rural public health. While there, she and her family enjoyed the great outdoors, the desert and mountains, hiking, camping, and skiing.
Since moving to California, Dr. Hord has been working in multispecialty clinics, providing primary care, including care for people with substance use conditions, and in promoting health in young adult communities. She most recently held the position of Medical Director of Student Health at California Polytechnic University. She is excited to join the leadership team and participate in the CenCal mission to provide new services and improved access to care in our central coast communities.
Dr. Hord is married and has three daughters, enjoys outdoor sports, hiking, gardening, music, and spending time with friends and family.