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Barber out as hospital foundation chief

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GREENFIELD — Hancock Regional Hospital Foundation has parted ways with its executive director of  nearly two years, Kristi Barber.

No details about the change in top management were available.

When reached for comment, Barber would say only that the decision was mutual.

Those were the exact words, as well, from Rob Matt, a foundation board member and vice president of business development and marketing for the hospital.

Joe Smith, president of the foundation’s board of directors, said a search has not yet begun to replace Barber. The board is still working on the job description and other details, Smith said, adding that applications from interested individuals are welcomed.

Barber, a Greenfield native, had 18 years of fundraising experience prior to joining the HRH Foundation in April 2011.

That was the same month a $3.1 million fundraising campaign began for the hospital’s hospice unit, which opened in August 2012.

Barber succeeded Tatiana Day, who left after only seven months in the job. Prior to Day, Myra Bleill was the longtime executive director of the foundation.

At the time of her hiring, Barber referred to the position as her “dream job” and said she envisioned taking the foundation “to another level by making it one of the largest regional hospital foundations around.”

The foundation’s current endowment value is $3.2 million, according to Smith.

That money supports a variety of causes and endowments, such as the Rex A. Pasko Hospice Endowment, relating to the hospital and its interests.

Fundraising for the hospice began in 2011, shortly after Barber was hired. So far, $1.7 million has been pledged toward the $3.1 million goal, Smith said.

 In addition to the hospice endowment, the foundation also supports other funds and causes. Among them are Caring Community Partners; the Edith Zike Nursing Scholarship; the James T. Anderson M.D. Center for Women’s Health; and the Myra Bleill Women Helping Women Endowment.

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