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Health-care veteran named to run Brooks Memorial

A veteran health-care administrator has been named CEO of Brooks Memorial Hospital, the Dunkirk hospital that has struggled financially in recent years and announced an affiliation agreement with Kaleida Health this month.

Mary E. LaRowe has worked in healthcare for more than three decades, including 25 years as an executive with the Healthcare Association of New York State, Westfield Memorial Hospital, United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia and the state Health Department.

She most recently served as president and CEO of St. James Mercy Health System in Hornell, where she oversaw an acute-care hospital, a 120-bed long-term-care facility, the St. James Mercy Foundation and a for-profit subsidiary.

LaRowe replaces J. Gary Rhodes, who had served as interim CEO at Brooks since 2013.

The 65-bed Brooks, which primarily serves northern Chautauqua County, said it will terminate its affiliation agreement with UPMC Hamot in Erie, Pa., to partner with Kaleida Health. TLC Health Network, the parent of Lake Shore Health Care Center in Irving, said earlier this month it will make its own affiliation with Kaleida Health official once it emerges from bankruptcy.

The organizations announced the arrangements after the state awarded a $57 million grant to help with restructuring the smaller hospitals.