American Heart Association announces new Connecticut board chair and members

Francine LoRusso of the Heart and Vascular Center, Yale New Haven Health named as Chair of the Connecticut Board of Directors

The American Heart Association, celebrating a century of profound impact on heart health and well-being, announces new leadership and board members to its Connecticut Board of Directors. Francine LoRusso, Senior Vice President, Operations and Executive Director for Heart and Vascular Services, Transplantation Center, Medicine and Radiology Services, Yale New Haven Health, will serve a two-year term as Chair of the Connecticut Board of Directors beginning July 1, 2024.

A long-standing and passionate supporter of the Association, LoRusso, will provide counsel and guidance to advance the organization’s mission to create healthier outcomes throughout Connecticut. In partnership with Board President Robert Elder, MD, LoRusso will lead the board in its work to address important issues facing the Connecticut Community, including tackling the youth vaping epidemic; increasing access to affordable and healthy food; addressing hypertension; and ensuring residents live in a healthy environment that supports physical and mental well-being. Dr. Elder is a Yale Medicine physician and Director of Yale New Haven Hospital Heart and Vascular Center’s Adult Congenital Heart Program.

In addition, the Association will welcome six new members to its regional board of directors:
Mark Brevard, Director of Multicultural Community Outreach, NE Donor Services

Katy Carrillo, IT Director, Stanley Black & Decker

Rachel Forman, MD, Stroke Neurologist, Yale New Haven Hospital

Lou Gianquinto, President, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield Connecticut

Ayanna Walker, PhD, Associate Dean, College of Health, and Human Services, Southern Connecticut State University

Wheatley Wentzell, Senior Vice President, Heart and Vascular Institute,Hartford HealthCare

Current board members include:

– Hardik Amin, MD, Co-Director, Hartford Hospital Comprehensive Stroke Center

– Maureen Boyle, Client Executive, National Accounts, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield

– Seth Lapuk, MD, Director, School of Pediatric Cardiac Ultrasound, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center

– Russ Mills, Connecticut Board Leadership Development Chair

– Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez, Superintendent, Hartford Public Schools

– Haley Sofiane, Chief Operating Officer, CareCentrix

For more information on the American Heart Association, visit