SUMMIT, NJ — Clelia Biamonti, Ph.D., a Summit resident and former management consultant, and a longtime member of the Overlook Foundation Board of Trustees, this week took the reins as the Overlook Foundation’s new executive director. Biamonti steps into the role held by longtime Executive Director Ann Oliva, who retired this year. Oliva, who began her career at Overlook in 1969 as a staff nurse before taking other roles at the hospital she became executive director of the Foundation in 1990.
“I have been very fortunate to have the opportunities to work with the people at Overlook as well as in the community,” Oliva said. “It has been a pleasure working under Clelia’s leadership and that relationship will greatly ensure a seamless transition for the Foundation."
Biamonti, who has served on the Foundation’s board of trustees for seven years, including three years as chair of the board, was a senior principal at Blue Fin Group, a management consulting firm that serves the biopharma industry. Prior to that, she was a management consultant for Coopers & Lybrand, and later, PricewaterhouseCoopers. Biamonti received a Ph.D. in biochemistry from UMDNJ/Rutgers University and a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, MA.
“My accomplishments in consulting and my charitable contributions have always been focused on optimizing the patient and health care provider experiences. As executive director, we’re never going to lose sight of that at the Foundation,” Biamonti said. “Anything we can do to further that ability at the hospital, I’m all in. I want to contribute to the tradition of excellence and innovation at Overlook.”
In addition to her work on the Overlook Foundation Board of Trustees, Biamonti is a member of the advisory board for Columbia University’s Bioethics program; served as president of the board of trustees for New Eyes for the Needy; and is a former member of the board of trustees of The Discovery Orchestra. Biamonti has been honored by the Boy Scouts of America and by the Suburban Chamber of Commerce as Citizen of the Year.
Biamonti was among several highly-accomplished candidates for the position considered by the Foundation board’s search committee, said Michael A. Tanenbaum, chair, Overlook Foundation board of trustees. Tanenbaum said Biamonti brings a deep understanding of health care and experience motivating high-performing teams to the Foundation.
“Clelia has already demonstrated her commitment to bringing new approaches and ideas to fundraising and is part of the community we serve,” Tanenbaum said. “Above all, Clelia has an abundance of energy and creativity and a deep and abiding commitment to our mission and our collective ability to grow the contributions that the Foundation makes to the Overlook community.”
Overlook Medical Center president Alan Lieber shared his compliments on the board’s selection of Biamonti. “With her experience on the Foundation board coupled with her connection to the community and background in health care, Clelia is uniquely qualified to lead the Foundation and continue to cultivate the support that has made Overlook Medical Center a leader,” Lieber said.
“My accomplishments in consulting and my charitable contributions have always been focused on optimizing the patient and health care provider experiences. As executive director, we’re never going to lose sight of that at the Foundation,” said Biamonti. “Anything we can do to further that ability at the hospital, I’m all in. I want to contribute to the tradition of excellence and innovation at Overlook.”
Biamonti said she is looking to build on the accomplishments of her predecessor. “In her service to Overlook, Ann has set a very high bar for both the role and the Foundation. I have deep respect for the culture and the legacy that Ann Oliva has created over the years at the Foundation. My approach will be to respect that and enhance it further, while adding my own uniqueness to the role. This will involve empowering the team at the Foundation as well as helping the community and donors understand the value and importance of donating to the Foundation so that we can continue to spearhead innovation at Overlook Medical Center."
Biamonti has a unique connection to Overlook, having been a patient, volunteer, Board member am also a donor, and said community members should know,"That innovation in health care, as in any field, is not inexpensive and it does not come easy. Dollars given to the Foundation are used to fuel innovation and support health care provider-directed initiatives that benefit Overlook and the greater community. The bottom line is innovation requires funding and the money that we need and use today comes from donors who have either been grateful patients themselves or understand the value of maintaining health care excellence in their backyard." Citing the Thomas Glasser Caregivers Center as a great example of an innovative program that filled a very basic and unmet need."
She added, "We continue to need donors’ dollars to make health care not only accessible and affordable but also excellent. It’s the difference between being good and being great, and those donations help us to be great. The initiatives they fund are guided by health care providers and their patients. The fact that Overlook is here, in our backyard and offers everything we need continues to happen because of donor-directed dollars."
The idea and funding of the Glasser Caregivers Center came directly from a caregiver and was very quickly adopted by the hospital president, staff and supported by the Foundation.
Biamonti's detailed her top priorities as executive director by stating, "I want to ensure that we continue to optimize the patient experience at Overlook and that the Foundation is also optimizing their provider’s experience. And then engaging the community to help us enhance health care locally in a model that makes sense to the community. The programs we have are very well-suited to the community we serve. We want to ensure not only that those programs continue but also that we are well-positioned and well-funded to support any future initiatives required and desired by the hospital staff. I want to ensure that when providers come to us with a potential initiative, we’re ready to meet those needs. I want us to continue to support Overlook’s center of excellence model. We have several fundraising campaigns going on right now, and focusing on the specific needs that our health care providers, patients, and caregivers come to us with helps us stay mission-driven."