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Elkhart County Health Department announces new Interim Health Officer and new health administrator

Elkhart County Health Department
Elkhart County Health Department

The Elkhart County Health Department announced Wednesday that Melanie Sizemore will take on the newly created role of Health Administrator.

Dr. Richard Hostetter, a retired board-certified oncologist, will serve as the county’s Interim Health Officer.

The new Health Administrator position is part of a reorganization of the Health Department to improve efficiency.

Sizemore has served as the Elkhart County Health Department’s Division Manager and Public Information Officer for nearly a decade. She has a Master’s in Public Health from Indiana Wesleyan University and will complete her Doctorate in June 2022.

The health department has experienced a lot of turnover in the past year dating back to the Elkhart County Council’s unanimous decision to reject a $3 million Centers for Disease Control grant that would have funded community health workers for the county’s minority communities.

Shortly after the grant rejection in September, former chairman Dr. Randy Cammenga quit and health officer Dr. Bethany Wait announced she would resign at the end of the year.

In November, three more board members announced they would also resign at the end of the year.

Two vacancies remain — the board appointed Goshen Fire Chief Danny Sink in November and Dr. Houman Vaghefi, an oncologist with Goshen Health, earlier this month.

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Kent Fulmer joined WVPE in August of 2020 to take on one of the station's most high profile roles as the local host of Morning Edition. Kent comes to WVPE with more than 20 years experience in radio in the Michiana area. During his career, Kent has had a variety of roles including DJ, reporter and newscaster, as well as several behind-the-scenes positions. Kent and his wife, Donna, are celebrating their 32nd wedding anniversary in 2020 and have lived in Elkhart County for almost 20 years. They have two adult daughters, Sarah and Rebecca. When not working, Kent is active as a musician, playing trumpet and flugelhorn. He has performed with a number of area bands. Currently he performs with the Phat Tuesday Dixieland Band and Jazz Assemblage, as well as his church's praise band. As a member of Jazz Assemblage, Kent has appeared at the Elkhart Jazz Festival several times. He also volunteers with Bugles Across America.