Northport VA Medical Center director resigns
The director of Northport Veterans Affairs Medical Center has submitted his resignation, leaving the facility after a year at the helm.
Scott Guermonprez’s last day leading the Northport VA will be July 14 as he intends to retire after more than 30 years of military and federal service.
“Having the opportunity to come back to Long Island and my home, Northport, as a capstone assignment is a wonderful and awesome way to finalize my career,” Guermonprez said.
“Having the opportunity to come back to Long Island and my home, Northport, as a capstone assignment is a wonderful and awesome way to finalize my career.”
– Scott Guermonprez
The director said this is effectively his second retirement from service. Guermonprez said he built his career in the military health care system serving as an administrator there for 24 years, before initially filing for retirement. At the last minute, he transferred to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to begin serving other veterans. Guermonprez worked for three years at Albany VA Medical Center before coming to Long Island.
“We’ve had a great time with health care professionally in Albany and Northport leading change, positive change we needed to make happen,” he said. “I am excitedly looking forward to future opportunities with family.”
Guermonprez said he believes he is leaving Northport’s facilities in better condition than when he arrived, claiming he’s improved the timely access to health care for veterans by making same-day appointments available for primary care and adding an increased capacity for telehealth, where elderly veterans can now use technology to talk and consult with their physicians from the comfort of their home.
Dr. Cathy Cruise, recently promoted to permanent chief of staff at Northport VA, will step up to serve as the acting director while a national search is conducted to find Guermonprez’s successor.
“I can say I’m very happy to serve in the acting director position for as long as it takes; it’s an honor,” said Cruise, a Huntington native. “I’ve grew up here and developed my love of medicine here.”
Cruise has worked at the Northport center for approximately two years but has spent more than 23 years serving with the VA. She will take the reins of the $15 million in capital projects currently underway at the facility and, possibly, the long-awaited demolition of two buildings Guermonprez has focused on, for which permits were received and authorized July 5.
“I wish I could be here for it, but I’ve asked Dr. Cruise to save a brick for me,” he said.