Executive Team

Steven Herber, MD, FACS, President & CEO, Adventist Health St. Helena

HerberSteven Herber, MD, FACS, is recognized as one of California's leading instructors and practitioners in progressive plastic and aesthetic surgery techniques. In addition to his role at Adventist Health St. Helena, Herber, a board-certified plastic surgeon, is medical director of the St. Helena Institute for Plastic Surgery.

Herber earned a bachelor of science degree from Pacific Union College in Angwin, California, and a medical degree from Loma Linda University School of Medicine. He completed a general surgery residency at Loma Linda University Medical Center and a plastic surgery residency at Yale University, as well as a fellowship in maxillofacial and pediatric plastic surgery at Akron Children's Hospital Medical Center in Akron, Ohio.

The American Medical Association has recognized Herber for his volunteer work on behalf of impoverished children around the world.


Hoda Assadian, Operations Executive, Adventist Health St. Helena

Hoda-AssadianHoda has a special talent for developing high performing teams, driving a culture of accountability and focusing her efforts on expanding access to excellent and affordable care. She believes in building trust, partnerships and collaboration with physicians and leaders. She is laser-focused on integrating and implementing the strategic plan into the daily operational activities across all departments and services. More importantly, she develops, coaches and mentors senior leaders in the appropriate manner for individual and group needs while helping them drive results and realize success.

Hoda came to us with proven experience in improving efficiency of operations, including nursing, ancillary clinic and outpatient centers. She has a style that is open, collaborative, visible and connected. She is strong, confident, result oriented and a decisive leader with the capacity to balance the big picture and strategic perspective with a focus on operations and the details of execution. Hoda has worked for Adventist Health Northern California Region in a variety of process and performance improvement leadership roles since 2011. Prior to this she worked at LAC+USC Medical Center in Los Angeles as a Process Improvement Analyst and as a Research Assistant.

Hoda holds a master of science degree in industrial and system engineering in healthcare from University of Southern California (USC), and she is certified in many notable change/project management programs including Lean, Master of Change Management, 6Sigma Black Belt and Project Management Professional. In addition, she is a CAPE Examiner (California Awards for Performance Excellence).

Hoda loves traveling and is passionate about learning about different cultures. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, meditation and outdoor activities.


Deborah Mensch, RN, BSN, MHSA, NE-BC, CPXP, Patient Care Executive, Adventist Health St. Helena

Liz Dickenson

Deborah Mensch, RN, BSN, MHSA, NE-BC, CPXP, an experienced nursing leader, has joined the Adventist Health St. Helena executive team as patient care executive. In this position Deb is leading acute care hospital operations, developing and mentoring nurses and supporting strategy development to improve experience, and quality of care and safety. Deb reports directly to Dr. Herber.

Deb, who has more than 30 years of acute-care leadership experience, comes to us from Adventist Health and Rideout in Marysville. Her extensive success with creating shared governance councils and developing clinical ladder opportunities makes her an ideal fit as we focus on our 2030 strategies in those areas and others. She also served at a Sutter and Renown hospitals in addition to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania.

Deb’s passion is being a team builder. “There is no ‘I’ in what we do,” she says. “My goal is to be talking to everyone with open, transparent and frequent communication, communication that is meaningful and drives the mission. I want to develop an interpersonal approach that brings everyone’s voice to the table, getting everyone involved: physicians, nurses, other departments and all associates. Improving communication is the key to a healthy work environment.”

She earned her RN from St. Luke’s Hospital School of Nursing, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; her bachelor’s in nursing from Penn College in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, graduating magna cum laude; and her master’s in health services administration/managed care from Marywood University, Scranton, Pennsylvania. In addition, she is certified as a nurse executive and a patient experience professional.

Deb’s favorite hobby is reading, both fiction and non-fiction, and she’d like to learn how to knit. She and her husband are proud owners of a RV that they like to climb into and visit the ocean and mountains. When the COVID-19 travel ban is lifted, they will be heading to Pennsylvania to visit family, including their two grown sons.


Elisa Blethen, DIS, MBA, Finance Officer, Adventist Health St. Helena

Elisa Blethen was appointed Finance Officer for Adventist Health St. Helena and Adventist Health Vallejo in August of 2019, after having served as Regional Director, Finance, for Adventist Health, Northern California Region.

As Finance Officer, Elisa oversees the strategic development, implementation and maintenance of all financial planning functions for Adventist Health St. Helena and Adventist Health Vallejo, including overseeing monthly financial performance of a 151 bed acute hospital and a 60 bed behavioral health center, implementing and monitoring a turnaround and growth strategy in collaboration with the executive team, reviewing capital projects and strategic initiatives for growth of key service lines, managing and maintaining labor standards in collaboration with clinical leadership and coordinating the annual budget process in conjunction with regional and system-wide initiatives.

Elisa’s experience is a unique blend of healthcare finance, management and academia. Prior to joining Adventist Health, she was the Director of the Healthcare Administration Program and Assistant Professor for Loma Linda University, School of Public Health. Prior to this, she was interim CEO for Malamulo Hospital in Makwasa, Malawi, a 200 bed rural, mission focused hospital, and the Director of Finance for Adventist Health International, where she provided financial consulting for Blantrye Adventist Hospital, a 30 bed urban hospital, Adventist Health Center Lilongwe (medical and dental), and Adventist Health Services, a network of 17 rural clinics throughout Malawi.

Her extensive academic career includes B.B.A. in accounting from Southern Adventist University, Collegedale, TN, Master of Business Administration from University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL and a Doctorate of Intercultural Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA.

Elisa brings a deep passion for extending the mission of finding God’s love by inspiring health, wholeness and hope. “As a leader with a passion to integrate service into all aspects of healthcare, I want to integrate my experience and training in finance and organizational culture in a position to further the goals and mission of the organization in the communities where they serve,” says Elisa.