Amigos Hospitalito Atitlán (“Amigos”) is a US nonprofit corporation formed to provide financial, material and human resources backing to subsidized healthcare services in rural Guatemala. Its focus was on Guatemalan charitable organizations that had strong roots in their local communities and could leverage Amigos support with a broad base of donors and volunteers.
Amigos has fulfilled this mission through its commitment to Hospitalito Atitlán. It has awarded the hospital two grants, providing:
- Money underwriting subsidies for medical treatment.
- Funds for the construction of the new hospital building, completed in 2011.
It not only offers financial support, but also organizational, technical and marketing assistance that enhances Hospitalito Atitlán’s work. Amigos also processes all US donations.
The Amigos Board of Directors includes:
Andrew Smith, MD, Chair
Andy is the Director of Obstetrics at Lawrence Family Medicine Residency (LFMR) in Lawrence, MA. A long-time supporter of the Hospitalito, Andy lived with his wife and daughter in Santiago Atitlán for 18 months starting in 2011 while he was a medical volunteer. He has made regular volunteer visits since then. Andy also coordinates resident visits to Hospitalito Atitlan as one of the LFMR Global Health Rotations. In addition to international health, his interests include inpatient medicine, surgical and high-risk obstetrics, and point-of-care teaching. A graduate of the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College, he is also an associate professor at Tufts University School of Medicine.
Michael Harvey, DrPH, Chair Elect
Michael is a professor of public health at Temple University in Philadelphia PA. He lived in Santiago Atitlán for a year while serving as the Hospitalito’s development manager. During that time, he oversaw a diverse portfolio of public health and sustainability projects including annual fundraising drives, grant applications and community public health initiatives. Mike has a Masters in Public Health from the University of Pennsylvania, where he took part in the Guatemalan Health Initiative — a longstanding partnership between Penn and the hospital — as well as a Doctor of Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a HA maternal/child sponsor.
Lyn Dickey, Vice Chair
Lyn drove to Guatemala in 1980 and dreamed of returning someday to live on the shores of Lake Atitlán. She continued to travel to Mexico and Central America, while raising a family, running a natural foods business, founding a recycling center and being an artist/photographer. In 2001, she built a solar-powered home near Santiago Atitlán, fulfilling a life-long dream. Lyn has been instrumental throughout the history of the Hospitalito. She was Founder and Treasurer of Comité K’aslimaal (2003 – 2006), which spearheaded the hospital’s re-opening after the Guatemalan civil war. From 2006-2011, Lyn was treasurer of Asociación K’aslimaal – Hospitalito Atitlán, the hospital Board, when she became its secretary. Today, she serves as the Hospitalito’s development officer.
Lisa Gatti Allen, Secretary
Lisa has been involved with Hospitalito Atitlán since 2008 when she spent time in Santiago Atitlán as a University of Pennsylvania graduate student. She has spent several long periods living and working in the community. This included one year as a Fulbright Fellow, during which she acted as the Hospitalito’s development manager. Lisa has also worked in Mexico, Thailand, Kenya and Tanzania. She has BSN and MSN (health leadership) degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and has completed several fellowships with its Center of Health Disparities and the Department of Global Health. Lisa is currently working as a Health Services Consultant and Healthcare Quality Improvement Specialist for TMF Health Quality Institute on several government contracts through CMMI, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation.
Larry Finnegan, Treasurer
Larry has served as AHA Treasurer for three years. He lived in Santiago, Chile in the 1980s while working with the United Nations and, more recently, in Guatemala where he was active in several local charities including Hospitalito Atitlán. Larry worked for the US Census Bureau for 20 years, leaving in 1995 to start his own landscaping and nursery business. He has been involved with the Hospitalito since 2005, right after the Hurricane Stan mudslides. He was on the board of Asociación K’aslimaal before becoming an AHA Board member. He and his wife live in Virginia.
Kevin Bjork, MD
Recently retired, Ken was Chief Medical Officer and Patient Safety Officer at PeaceHealth at the St Joseph Medical Center in Bellingham, WA. Previously, Ken was PeaceHealth’s Medical Director of Perioperative Surgical Services. Prior to joining PeaceHealth, he was an anesthesiologist at Bellingham Anesthesia Associates for 23 years. Since 2007, Ken has made regular missions to Santiago Atitlán, Guatemala; medical and with the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. Since 2009, he has participated in surgical team and anesthesia training in Managua, Nicaragua with Health Volunteers Overseas. A graduate of Creighton University (Omaha, NE), he was Chief Anesthesia Resident and Critical Care Fellow at the University of Washington in Seattle.
Zoe is a Research Coordinator at the Mixed Methods Research Lab in the Department of Family Medicine at Penn Medicine. She grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and began to spend her summers in Central America as a high school student. She first traveled to Guatemala as an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania as part of the Guatemala Health Initiative—a partnership between UPenn and Hospitalito Atitlán. She fell in love with Santiago Atitán, and just three weeks after graduating from Penn with a B.A. in Health & Societies, moved back to south shores of the lake to work as a fellow in HA’s development office for two years. During this time, Zoe came to know the Hospitalito extremely well and brings her recent experiences living and working in Santiago to the board.
Kevin Bjork, MD
Kevin has been a general surgeon at Health Partners in Stillwater, Minnesota since 1990. A long-time supporter of healthcare throughout Guatemala, Kevin first volunteered at Hospitalito Atitlán in 2007 and since then has coordinated regular surgical teams. A graduate of the University of Minnesota of Medicine, he completed his surgical residency at the Mayo Clinic and served as past president of the Minnesota Surgical Society and the St. Paul Surgical Society. In 2010, he was named a Top Doctor for Women by Minnesota Monthly and in 2012, received the HealthPartners Wilbur Thomas Community Award. And each year from 2015 to 2019, he’s been named a Top Doctor by Mpls.St.Paul Magazine. His wife Evelyn is a high school math teacher, they have four sons.
Rob has a deep affection for Guatemala and made many trips there to visit his parents when they lived in Antigua. His daughter Veronica is Guatemalan — Tz’utujil by birth (from Chicacao). His affinity for the Hospitalito has been nurtured by his father Larry’s involvement on the K’aslimaal and Amigos boards. Rob is a generous Amigos donor. His rusty Spanish is from his teenage years in Santiago, Chile, which made a lasting impression on him and his understanding of third world poverty. He is a finance professional, who is currently in an entrepreneurial phase. He spent 18 years as an executive at a large US bank, after which he consulted with a variety of large financial institutions in the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK (even one in Costa Rica).
Jacob Glanville, PhD
Jake grew up in Guatemala with his brother and expatriate parents who owned the Posada de Santiago. His father David served as a K’aslimaal board member and has been a long-term supporter of the Hospitalito, as is Jake. Jake constructs immune medicines and is currently working on an antibody therapeutic for the coronavirus. He is co-founder and CEO of Distributed Bio (2012). His latest start up, Centivax, is a therapeutics company founded to treat and eradicate the “remaining pathogens of the 21st century.” He was honored with the Gates Foundation Grand Challenge “Ending the Pandemic Threat” for his broad-spectrum vaccine technology. The project’s history was captured for the Netflix docuseries Pandemic: How to Prevent an Outbreak. NIH supports his work on broad-spectrum antivenom. MTEC and NMRC supported his work on broad-spectrum anti-bacterials for wound healing.
Bryan G. Sauer, MD
Bryan is an Associate Professor of Medicine in Gastroenterology at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA. He grew up in Oconomowoc, WI and attended medical school at the University of Wisconsin. Bryan has an interest in international medicine and has lead endoscopy efforts in India, Honduras, and Guatemala. Bryan first visited Guatemala as a medical student in 2002 during a medical rotation in Belize, returning in 2016 to visit the Hospitalito Atitlan in hopes of setting up an endoscopy program. This dream was realized in 2019 when donated endoscopy equipment was used to perform the first endoscopy procedures at Hospitalito. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his wife Betsy and three children.
Dave is an entrepreneurial attorney with experience in real-estate acquisition. He is president of CJMA Financial Corporation and chief manager of Parkland Village in Faribault, Minnesota where his focus on bringing new housing stock to market with a focus on affordability, quality construction and design. In early 2022, he visited Hospitalito with surgeon Kevin Bjork and recognized that he was eager to help. In his spare time, Dave enjoys hiking, biking vintage cars and golf.
Susan made her first trip to Guatemala in 1995 as an elementary school principal to take immersion Spanish classes to improve communication with students and parents in her community in California. Shortly thereafter, she built a vacation home in Santiago Atitlán and has become friends with the local and part-time community. Susan received her BA from Humboldt State University, MA from Michigan State University, and holds various advanced teaching credentials, with a specialization in Special Education. She retired from the position of school district superintendent in California to devote more time to Atitlán, art quilting, fly fishing in Montana, and my family and friends. It continues to be a wonderful adventure.