University Leadership

Vivian A. Sanchez

Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer

Vivian A. Sanchez brings extensive higher education and business experience to her role as Chancellor, having worked in public research universities in the U.S. and private institutions in nine countries.

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Brian Goldstein, PhD, CCC-SLP

President and Chief Academic Officer

Dr. Brian Goldstein is an accomplished teacher, scholar and academic leader with more than 25 years of experience in higher education at public and private universities with multiple locations.

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Melanie Storms, PsyD

Vice Chancellor

Dr. Melanie Storms is the Vice Chancellor with the University and brings extensive leadership experience in higher education and healthcare.

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Maria Puzziferro, PhD

Associate Chief Academic Officer and Vice President, Teaching, Learning & Innovation

Dr. Maria Puzziferro’s experience as a transformational academic leader, researcher and teacher spans more than 25 years at public and private institutions in roles related to the advancement of innovative teaching and learning approaches. She has served as a President, Provost and Dean with extensive experience developing, launching and operating online and blended programs.

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Tia Hughes, DrOT, MBA, OTR/L

Associate Dean, Occupational Therapy Programs

Dr. Tia Hughes joined the University in June 2020 as Associate Dean, Occupational Therapy Programs.

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Thomas P. Werner, PT, MA, PhD

Assistant Dean, PT Faculty and Academic Affairs and Program Director, DPT Program—Dallas, TX Campus

Dr. Thomas “Thom” Werner joined the University in 2012 and has more than two decades of experience in private practice.

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Kathy H. Wood, PhD

Interim Assistant Dean, College of Health Sciences; Program Director, MHS/MHA Programs

Dr. Kathy Wood’s experience in higher education spans more than 20 years. In addition to her leadership roles, Dr. Wood has taught extensively in the fields of health care administration, business and health care finance.

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Elizabeth (Beth) Ennis, PT, EdD, PCS

Senior Program Director, DPT Program—St. Augustine and Miami, FL Campuses

Based at the St. Augustine, FL campus and leading both Florida DPT programs, Dr. Elizabeth “Beth” Ennis joined the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in 2022  

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Meghan Savage, PhD, CCC-SLP

Senior Program Director, MS-SLP Program

Meghan Savage, Ph.D., CCC-SLP is the Senior Program Director and an Associate Professor in the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (MS-SLP) program.

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Sunddip Aguilar, EdD

Program Director, EdD Program

With specialties in higher education and instructional design, Dr. Aguilar has 15+ years’ experience in education. She has served on several boards of directors to assist organizations in successfully achieving their purpose, vision and goals. In 2017, she received the Faculty of the Year award.

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Helen Carey, PhD, MSc Adv OT, OTR

Program Director, OT Programs—St. Augustine, FL Campus

Dr. Carey is an occupational therapist with a focus on adult rehabilitation and neurology. Since 1993, she has expanded clinical services in acute, outpatient and community care with a focus on neurological rehabilitation.

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Sarah M. I. Cartwright, DNP, RN, NI-BC, CAPA, FASPAN

Executive Director, School of Nursing

Dr. Cartwright is a doctoral-level registered nurse with expertise in clinical outcomes, informatics nursing and pain management. With specialties in health administration and population health, she has presented at numerous conferences, written chapters for multiple textbooks and published journal articles.

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Claudia Chahin, JD

Assistant General Counsel and Austin, TX Campus Director

Claudia Chahin has a background in employment law, education and non-profits. She fosters a positive community for students, faculty and staff through her collaborative and thoughtful approach.

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Julie Gonick

Vice President, Enrollment Management and San Marcos, CA Campus Director

Julie Gonick joined the University in 2016 with more than 15 years of experience in admissions and higher education.

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Marcia Hamilton, OTD, MSHS, OTR/L, BCTS

Program Director, OT Programs—Miami, FL Campus

Dr. Hamilton has practiced as an occupational therapist for 39 years. Her clinical experience is in diverse practice settings, including early intervention, outpatient rehabilitation, public and private schools, developmental disabilities, school settings, sub-acute care, private practice and primary care.  

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Lori Hankins

Director, Continuing Professional Education and St. Augustine, FL Campus Director

Lori Hankins brings more than 20 years of operational experience to the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.

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James (Jim) Mathews, PT, DPT, PhD, MBA

Program Director, DPT Program—San Marcos, CA Campus

Dr. Jim Mathews is Program Director, DPT Program on the San Marcos, CA campus.

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Keith B. McWilliams, OTD, OTR/L, DRS

Program Director, OTD Programs—Dallas, TX campus

Dr. Keith McWilliams is a client-centered and innovative occupational therapist with experience in brain and spinal cord injury treatment and research, oncology treatment, management, training/program development and client/family relations.

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Ashley Bourque Meaux, PhD, CCC-SLP

Director, SLP Clinical Education Placement Team, MS-SLP Program and Dallas, TX Campus Director

Dr. Ashley Bourque Meaux joined the University in 2021 as part of the MS-SLP leadership team.

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Karen Menard, PhD, OTR/L

Program Director, Post-Professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)

Dr. Karen Menard joined the University in 2012 as contributing faculty and became Program Director in March 2015.

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Erin Schwier, OTD, EdD, OTR/L

Program Director, OT Programs—San Marcos, CA Campus

Dr. Erin Schwier is the Program Director for the Master of Occupational Therapy program on the San Marcos, CA campus, where she also serves as an Assistant Professor. 

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Gabriel Somarriba, PT, DPT, EdD

Program Director, DPT Program—Miami, FL Campus; Interim Program Director, DPT Program—Austin, TX Campus; Miami, FL Campus Director

Dr. Gabriel Somarriba is a licensed physical therapist and joined the University in 2009.

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Mary Zadnik, ScD, MEd, OTR/L

Program Director, OT Programs—Austin, TX Campus

Dr. Mary Zadnik is the Program Director for the entry-level Occupational Therapy programs on the Austin, TX campus.  She formerly served as an assistant scientist at John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

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Damien Cooper

Chief Information Officer

As CIO, Damien Cooper serves provides leadership and direction IT strategies and initiatives to meet the complex needs of the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.

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Stephanie Furlough-Morris, PhD

Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President, Campus Operations

Dr. Furlough-Morris brings vast experience in higher education, having served for more than a decade in senior level finance and operating roles.

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Deborah Zimic

General Counsel and Senior Vice President of Compliance

Zimic provides cross-divisional legal and compliance support to the University. She has practiced law for more than 30 years, with over 20 years of specialized higher education legal experience.

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Melanie Davis, DHED

Vice President, Accreditation

Melanie Davis, DHED joined the University in 2021. Dr. Davis worked in K–12 education for 13 years, first in the classroom and then as a curriculum and assessment administrator.

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Susan Waugh

Vice President, Human Resources

Susan Waugh, Vice President of Human Resources, has more than 20 years of professional experience as a leader in human resources, with strong functional expertise in talent acquisition, operational efficiency, organizational design, training and development. She excels at delivering HR practices that create strategic value and focus on improved work processes and employee engagement, and

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Dawn Werling

Vice President of Student Administration

Dawn Werling joined the University in 2018 and has effectively advanced key organizational initiatives and student imperatives, leveraging her deep higher education experience and demonstrating strong judgement and commitment.

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