Our Executive Team

Inspired Leadership at Huntsville Memorial Hospital

Huntsville Memorial Hospital operates under a close team of leaders known as the Executive Team.The team philosophy is "to provide friendly health care services, while continuing to exceed the expectations of the community.”

Steven Smith, FACHE
Chief Executive Officer
Steven Smith,
Chief Executive Officer

Jim Jenkins
Chief Financial Officer

Linda Lawson, MSN, RN, HACP
Chief Nursing Officer

Board of Directors

Under the leadership of our Board of Directors, and through the dedication of our professional health care staff, Huntsville Memorial Hospital is setting the standard in quality health care every day with every patient we care for.

Ray Hernandez, Chair

Ray Hernandez is president and CEO of the Huntsville-Walker County Chamber of Commerce. He graduated with Honors from Southwest Texas State University, received Economic Development training from Texas A&M University-College Station, and graduated with Honors (Innovation 88) from the University of Texas-Austin LBJ School of Public Affairs. Hernandez served in the U.S. Army, as a Board Regent for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for Organizational Management program, a Vice President of Communications for the Texas Chamber of Commerce Executives, and as a Board Member for the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives. He currently serves as a Board Member of the Center for Community Engagement at Sam Houston State University.

Timothy Deahl, M.D., Vice Chair

Timothy Deahl, M.D., has served the Walker County community since 1992 when he opened his medical practice. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from the University of Texas and his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, finishing in 1988. He then completed his residency at St. Joseph's Hospital in Houston, Texas. He has served the local community for many years. This year, Huntsville Memorial Hospital named Dr. Deahl Physician of the Year.

Steven Smith, FACHE, CEO/Secretary

Steven Smith is Chief Executive Officer for Huntsville Memorial Hospital. He has 40 years of experience in medical center executive leadership. Smith attended the University of Alabama where he obtained his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He then received his Master of Science in Healthcare Administration from Trinity University. Smith is a Board Certified Fellow (FACHE) designated by the American College of Healthcare Executives. He also served three years as Board Chair for the Texas Rural Accountable Care Organization (TRACO). Prior, Smith served as CEO for Matagorda Regional Medical Center, Sugar Land Surgical Hospital, and Kingwood Specialty Hospital. He also served as the Hospital President and System Chief Operating Officer of Coffee Health Group, and President and CEO of Memorial Medical Center.

Sujesh Pillai, M.D., Chief of Staff/Director

Sujesh Pillai, M.D., is Chief of Staff at Huntsville Memorial Hospital. Dr. Pillai was born in India and raised in Houston, Texas. He completed his undergraduate studies at Lamar University. He then attended medical school at St. George’s University in Grenada, West Indies. Dr. Pillai completed his medical training in Internal Medicine at Louisiana State University. He has since served Huntsville and Walker County at Huntsville Memorial Hospital for the past 11 years.

Joe Sapp, Walker County Hospital District Director

Joe Sapp is a director of the Walker County Hospital District (WCHD) Board of Managers and serves as the WCHD representative on the Huntsville Memorial Hospital Board of Directors. Born and raised in Conroe, Texas, Sapp received his undergraduate degree in Pharmacy from the University of Texas. He completed his residency in Hospital Pharmacy at Harris Hospital. Sapp holds 49 years of experience in the field. He worked 13 years in retail pharmacy before serving 23 years as the Director of Pharmacy at Huntsville Memorial Hospital. He also spent 12 years with UTMB Correctional Managed Care Pharmacy. Sapp is a graduate of the Huntsville Leadership Institute. He also served as a past board member of the City of Huntsville Board of Adjustments and Appeals, and on the board of the local chapter of the American Heart Association.

Joe Thomason, Community Hospital Corporation Director

Joe Thomason is Community Hospital Corporation’s (CHC) representative on the Huntsville Memorial Hospital Board of Directors. Thomason is Senior Vice President of Hospital Operations for CHC. He Received a Bachelor of Business degree from West Texas State University. He then obtained a Master of Business Administration and Health Organization Management degree from Texas Tech University. Thomason has 30 years of experience in hospital operations and administration. He has served as a Chief Operating Officer for a Tenet Hospital in El Paso, Texas, Chief Executive Officer for Centennial Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, and Chief Executive Officer of RHD Memorial Medical Center in Dallas, and Brownsville Medical Center in Brownsville, Texas.

Judy Upshaw, Community Director

Judy Upshaw serves as a Community Director on the Huntsville Memorial Hospital Board of Directors. Upshaw received her Associate Degree in Nursing from Tyler Junior College. She then obtained both her Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science Degrees in Nursing from the University of Texas at Arlington. A registered nurse for the past 24 years, Upshaw has been Clinical Assistant Professor at Sam Houston State University School of Nursing since 2013. She 110 Memorial Hospital Drive, Huntsville, TX 77340 • www.huntsvillememorial.com currently serves as a committee member for the School of Nursing and the College of Health Sciences. Upshaw was hired by Huntsville Memorial Hospital as Director of the Correctional Care Unit when it opened in 2011. She also formerly served as a Board Member for the SAAFE House.

Trey Wharton, Community Director

Trey Wharton serves as a Community Director on the Huntsville Memorial Hospital Board of Directors. Raised in Huntsville, Texas, he has owned his own independent insurance agency since 1991. Wharton also serves as an Investment Advisor Representative. He attended Texas Christian University where he obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration. Wharton holds multiple licenses, including a Series 65 License, a Series 63 License, a Series 6 License, and a Life, Health, Property, and Casualty Insurance License. He also serves on the Board of Trustees for Huntsville Independent School District, and on the Board of Directors for the Huntsville Walker County Chamber of Commerce.

Your health. Our community. Our commitment. Contact us at Huntsville Memorial Hospital for more information on our executive team.

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Recent News

  • Huntsville Memorial Hospital Announces New CFO Jim Jenkins

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  • Huntsville Memorial Hospital New Board Leads Future Path

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  • HMH Hires Linda Lawson as new CNO

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