Leadership Team - Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System (CAVHCS)
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Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System (CAVHCS)


Leadership Team

Amir Farooqi, Interim Director

Amir Farooqi | 334-272-4670

Interim Director

Amir Farooqi, FACHE, is the Interim Health Care System Director for Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System’s (CAVHCS) West (Montgomery, AL) and East (Tuskegee, AL) campuses since October 2019. Previously, Mr. Farooqi was the Associate Director of the Tuscaloosa Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) on July 2017, having served Veterans for 15 years at the medical center, network, and national levels. Mr. Farooqi also served as Interim Associate Director at Tuscaloosa. Prior to Tuscaloosa, he was Acting Assistant Director at Atlanta VAMC (August-November 2016). Since October 2015, he served formally as Public Affairs Officer for VA Southeast Network (VISN 7), having joined VISN 7 in November 2013 as Operations Manager and simultaneously serving as Interim Strategic Planner and Interim Public Affairs Officer for extended periods until September 2015. Before VISN 7, Mr. Farooqi was the Senior Analyst in VHA Strategic Planning under the Office of the Assistant Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Policy and Planning, where he coordinated VHA’s National Leadership Council Strategic Planning Summit, supported the VHA Strategic Plan, and coordinated VHA’s Performance Plan in VA’s Congressional Budget submission. He started his VA career as an Administrative Fellow at G.V. (Sonny) Montgomery VAMC in Mississippi, progressing to Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff and prior to the Chief Nurse Executive. While there, he received the Secretary’s Hero Award for service during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Mr. Farooqi is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), a Member of the VA ACHE Regent’s Advisory Council, and a Certified Mentor. He is a graduate of the Executive Career Field Career Development Program (2008-2009), Leadership VA (2012-2013), and the Excellence in Government Fellow Program (2015-2016). He is on the Board of Directors for the Leadership VA Alumni Association and for Pets Are Loving Support.

Valerie Russell, Deputy Director

Valerie Russell | 334-272-4670

Deputy Director

Valerie Russell, FAC-P/PM, MSM Deputy Director Valerie Russell was appointed Deputy Director at the Central Alabama VA Health Care System (CAVHCS) effective November 26, 2017. She comes to CAVHCS from the South Central VA Health Care Network (VISN 16) in Ridgeland, Mississippi as the Prosthetic and Sensory Aids Service Program Manager. Mrs. Russell recently completed a two-year assignment at the Alexandria VA Health Care System (AVAHCS). She served as Assistant Director to Activations where she successfully activated two large outpatient clinics in Lake Charles and Lafayette, Louisiana. During her time at AVAHCS, she also served as Acting Medical Center Director Prior to her detail as Assistant Director to Activations, she served as Acting Associate Director at AVAHCS. She also served as Acting Assistant Director at the Oklahoma City VA Health Care System. Mrs. Russell began her career in 1994 at the Southern Arizona VA Health Care System in Tucson, Arizona as a Program Support Assistant. Mrs. Russell has a Bachelor of Science Degree from Troy University in Troy, Alabama; and a Master’s Degree in Business also from Troy University. She is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives. She is the proud wife of a retired 30-year Air Force Veteran (Chief Msgt). In addition, she is the proud mother of two children – her youngest son is an honor student and her other son is currently an Active Duty Air Force service member.

Carolyn Caver-Gordon, Associate Director for Patient Care Services

Carolyn Caver-Gordon | 334-272-4670

Associate Director for Patient Care Services

Mrs. Caver-Gordon was assigned as the Associate Director for Patient Care Service in February 2017. She began her Nursing Career as a Student Nurse Technician at Tuskegee VA Medical Center from February 1981 to February 1982 in Psychiatry. Upon graduation in May 1983, she worked as a Staff Nurse in Acute Psychiatry. She was promoted to Head Nurse for the Substance Abuse Program in 1988, where she was instrumental in the development and expansion of the treatment program for alcohol and substance use and the nursing role in the treatment of addictive disorders in Veterans. During her tenure, the unit expanded to include a 30 bed Specialized Intensive Post Traumatic Stress Disorder program that focused on recovery for combat veterans. In February 1997, she served as Acting Patient Care Coordinator for Mental Health and was selected as Nurse Executive (Associate Chief Nurse) for Mental Health in May of 1998. Mrs. Caver-Gordon served as the Acting Associate Director for Patient Care Services at CAVHCS from March 2004-September 2005 and July 2009 to December 2010; Acting Deputy ADPCS from February 2007-July 2009 and Acting Associate Chief of Staff for Mental Health from January 2014 to December 2014. Mrs. Caver-Gordon has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science degree in Nursing with a focus in Management and Organizational Leadership.

Christina White, Acting, Associate Director

Christina White | 334-272-4670

Acting, Associate Director

Christina White, has served as Acting Associate Director at the Central Alabama VA Health Care System (CAVHCS) since May 1, 2019. She was appointed Assistant Director to the Orlando Veterans Affairs Health Care System September 1, 2019 having served Veterans since 1996 at the medical center, network, and national levels. Ms. White is responsible for the Orlando VA Medical Center’s Nutrition and Food Service, Voluntary Service, Public Affairs, Police Service, Activations, Facility Planning, Innovation and Compensation & Pension Service. Prior to her appointment, Christina White served as a Health System Specialist (HSS) in the Office of the Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Operations and Management (DUSHOM) with the Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration (VHA), in Washington, DC. Ms. White is a senior HSS in the Office of Network Support and serves as a liaison between Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISN) and VHA Leadership in the area of operations. She has been in her current position as an HSS with the DUSHOM since April 2010. Ms. White began her VA career at the G.V. Sonny Montgomery VA Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi as an Administrative Officer in Medicine Service in 1996. She has over 19 years of extensive field experience in clinical administration. In addition to her administrative duties, Ms. White also served as the Public Affairs Officer in Denver, Colorado.