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Staff

10 E. Church Street
Bethlehem, PA 18018
Phone: 610-865-7083
Fax: 610-865-7326
General Email: askbhb@bethlehem-pa.gov

S. Benay Berger, BS,RN
Director, nursing/community health

Beth Somishka, BS, CP-FS
Sanitarian, Environmental health

E-mail: bsomishka@bethlehem-pa.gov

Beth graduated from Juniata College with a BS in Environmental Science, spending two years after college as a Laboratory Technician. In 2006, she went on to work as an Environmental Health Specialist at the Montgomery County Health Department and became an Environmental Health Field Supervisor for them in 2011. She then joined our team at the Bethlehem Health Bureau in May 2013. Here at BHB, Beth conducts inspections and plan reviews of licensed food facilities in our city. As a ServSafe certified Instructor & Proctor, she is able to provide ServSafe classes and administer examinations. Beth is also a certified Lead Risk Assessor and enjoys assisting with BHB’s Lead Hazard Control Program. When she’s not at work, she likes spending time outdoors with her husband and their dog.


brittany pantoni, mph
community health specialist, emergency prepardness
claudia richan, bs, paphs
medical reserve corps coordinator and community health specialist, injury & disease prevention programs

E-mail: crichan@bethlehem-pa.gov

Claudia graduated from PSU with a BS in Bio Behavioral Science and completed a work study as an Occupational Health Assistant for Lucent Technologies. She was previously employed as a Health Fitness Specialist at Health Fitness Corporation. Employed with the BHB since 2002, Claudia is currently involved in four different programs: Injury Prevention, where she is a master trainer and coach for “A Matter of Balance” fall prevention program for older adults, the employee wellness program for all City of Bethlehem employees, the Obesity Prevention program, where she focuses on nutrition and physical activity in the community and school settings, and lastly, the Tobacco Prevention program where she is a certified tobacco treatment specialist and cessation counselor. In the summer of 2014, she also became the Bethlehem Medical Reserve Corps Coordinator.  A certified physical activity in public health specialist, she is passionate about nutrition and exercise, as well as motivating others to achieve their health goals.

holly snyder
community health specialist, ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
jessica l. lucas, ms, rs, hhs, cp-fs
director, environmental health

E-mail: jlucas@bethlehem-pa.gov

Jessica graduated Pre-Med/Biology with a minor in Geology from Franklin and Marshall College. She attended Duke University, pursuing graduate work in Environmental Toxicology and completed this work at The George Washington University, obtaining a master’s degree in Environmental Resources and Policy. She completed all course work for Masters of Public Administration from Kutztown University and interned with BHB during her college/graduate career. She began work for Lehigh County Conservation District as an Erosion and Sedimentation Control Technician before returning to BHB as a Sanitarian in 2000. In 2004, she was promoted to her current role, Director of Environmental Health Programs. She is responsible for the oversight and implementation of all environmental health related programs and staff, including Food Safety, Institutional Safety/Sanitation, Public Nuisance Investigation, Abatement and Enforcement, Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Reduction Program, ON-lot Septic System, Animal Control, Public Bathing Place and Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards. Her primary professional interests include analysis of environmental toxicology and its health effects of an individual. Outside of work she loves spending time with her family and pets, and enjoys outdoor activities.

joshua osowiecki, bsph, ches
community health specialist, environmental health
JORDAN WESTERMAN, msw
community health specialist, Community connections police social worker

kate prosser, bs
community health specialist
kristen wenrich, mph, cph
health director

E-mail: kwenrich@bethlehem-pa.gov

Kristen graduated from East Stroudsburg University with her BS in Community Health Education in 1998. At ESU, she also earned her Masters Degree in Public Health in 2004. She received her certification in public health in 2008, and she has been with the Bethlehem Health Bureau since 1998. In her role as Health Director, she focuses on diagnosing the most pressing health issues in Bethlehem, identifying the most effective strategies to improve health and collaborating with community partners in an effort to fulfill the Health Bureau’s mission and create a healthier Bethlehem. She is responsible for financial management, enforcement of public health regulations, programmatic grants and performance of the staff. Kristen is passionate about public health and believes that prevention is the most effective way to improve health and reduce health care costs. When she is not at work she likes spending time with her family, running & staying fit.

larisa Kühn, BSN, RN, Ibclc
Community Health nurse, maternal child health 
lauren Fischer, MSW, LSW
Community Health Specialist, Environmental health
lauren Vargas, BA, Bsn, rn
Community Health nurse, IMMMUNIZATIONS
lisa miller
secretary & animal bite investigator

E-mail: lmiller@bethlehem-pa.gov

Lisa joined the Bethlehem Health Bureau in 2016 after working in the city’s Recycling Department for two years. She is the Health Secretary, and some of her many duties include answering phones & scheduling appointments, invoicing, and handling purchase orders. She also works as the secretary at several of the health bureau’s clinics, is on the Workforce Development Team, and conducts animal bite investigations. Lisa enjoys spending time with her family and cooking/baking.


lori rivera, MSW
community health specialist, community connections police social worker
melitza lopez
community health specialist, injury and disease prevention programs, chronic disease

E-mail:mlopez@bethlehem-pa.gov

Employed with the health bureau since 2001, Melitza graduated as a Medical Assistant from the Allentown Business School. As a Community Health Assistant, she is involved with many of the BHB clinics, including Women’s, H.E.A.R.T.S, & STD, and works in the Healthy Woman and Immunization programs by providing clerical assistance and communicating with community partners & patients to achieve healthy, positive outcomes. Melitza is also responsible for working with NextGen as part of the BHB’s efforts to switch to Electronic Health Records (EHR) and is a Certified Application Counselor, helping clients with the online/written application for health care. She loves helping clients and when she is not at work she loves to travel, bake and spend time with family taking pictures of their many adventures.


merrilynn pysher RN, NP
NURSE PRACTIONER
mildred ozoa
community health specialist, injury and disease prevention programs, highway safety program

E-mail: mozoa@bethlehem-pa.gov

Employed with the health bureau since 1999, Mildred has worked with the Healthy Woman Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening program for over 13 years. She is also responsible for the medical billing component of the grant funding this program. She is a certified car seat technician, where she assists with car seat installations for the City of Bethlehem residents. She works under the Injury Prevention Grant providing a senior fall prevention program and under the Highway Safety Grant for Northampton County. Mildred enjoys spending time with her family and friends, watching her children play sports, mainly basketball and football, and spending time playing with her miniature pincher.

nick morrone, as, impc
housing project specialist, Environmental Health
Sara Reyes, BA
Community Health Specialist, HIV, STD, & Family Planning Programs

E-mail: sreyes@bethlehem-pa.gov

Employed at the health bureau since 2020, Sara graduated from New Jersey City University with a BA in Sociology and Anthropology. She is currently involved in two programs; HIV & STD program in which she works with the Nurse Practitioner to offer free and confidential HIV and STD testing and treatment, and in the Family Planning program to offer women’s health comprehensive services such as Pap smears, breast exams, and birth control. She reports to the Pennsylvania Department of Health for STD surveillance and provides Sex Education as well as off-site testing and services in collaboration with local community based organizations. Sara enjoys spending time with her family and traveling.

shannon lilly, BA, BSN, RN
TUberculosis/Infectious disease
COMMUNITY HEALTH Nurse
sherri l. penchishen, mph, rdn, ldn, fand 
director, injury & disease prevention, public health emergency preparedness, and health education programs

E-mail: sPenchishen@bethlehem-pa.gov

Sherri received a dual Bachelor’s degree in Public Health and Nutrition from West Chester University in 1993 and her Dietetic Verification from Immaculata College in 1995. She completed the Approved Pre-Professional Practice Program through The Wood Company in 1996, earning her Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Licensed Dietitian Nutritionist credentials. She received her Masters of Public Health from East Stroudsburg University in 2001 and is recognized as a Fellow by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics since 2013. Previously, she has worked at several local companies, including Lehigh Valley and Easton Hospitals. She has been employed with the health bureau since 1997 in her current role, where she administratively oversees the staff of the Chronic Disease and Health Education Programs, Public Health Emergency Preparedness, Violence & Injury Prevention, Diabetes Prevention, Highway Safety, Breast & Cervical Cancer, Obesity and Chronic Disease Prevention, Employee Wellness and Tobacco Cessation and Prevention. She is also responsible for the development of educational materials & strategies, evaluation of programs, and community needs, as well as providing consultation for the other health disciplines. Sherri is also a Preceptor for dietetic interns, undergraduate and graduate public health interns from various dietetic and public health programs, and is a Mentor for the Embracing Community Dynamics course through the RN to BSN program at Moravian College. She is a member of the BHB Strategic Planning Team and Accreditation Coordinator. Sherri enjoys serving on the statewide planning committees for injury prevention, and serving as an Advisory Member for East Stroudsburg University’s Masters of Public Health program & Cedar Crest College’s Dietetic Internship Program. When she isn’t at work, she loves spending time with her children and family, cooking, gardening and relaxing by the pool.

Victoria SalazAR, bs
COMMUNITY HEALTH Specialist, Communicable DIsease

E-mail: vsalazar@bethlehem-pa.gov

Victoria graduated from Cedar Crest College in 2019 with a BS in Public Health. She began her career here at BHB as a Community Health Assistant in Environmental Health Programs where she assisted with inspections of licensed food facilities, public bathing spaces, proctor Servsafe exams and assisted with various tasks in the Lead & Healthy Homes program. Currently, she works in the Communicable Disease program, where she is responsible for HIV/STD testing, counseling and investigations, phlebotomy, off-site testing and services in collaboration with local community based organizations,  and partner notification. In her free time she enjoys being with her family and pets, painting, and reading.

yolanda gonzalez
office manager

E-mail: ygonzalez@bethlehem-pa.gov

Before working here at BHB in 1993, Yolanda worked for the Bethlehem Housing Authority for five years. Here at the health bureau, she coordinates the City of Bethlehem’s Dental/Vision Program for patients and processes invoices for payment. She is responsible for the monthly invoicing packets sent to the State for reimbursement. She enters payroll for the staff here at BHB and handles all licenses for the retail food establishments, as well as for any temporary event involving food. She types the monthly Board of Health meeting minutes, agenda and letter. She also records citizen complaints in the Code Enforcement program and she is one of our valuable Spanish/English Translators for phone calls in the health bureau and other departments. In her spare time she like sewing, traveling and cooking.

zoraida garcia
community health specialist, chronic disease

E-mail: zgarcia@bethlehem-pa.gov

Zoraida (Zory) graduated from Star Technical Institute as a Medical Assistant. Before becoming a medical assistant, she was a Para Professional for Allentown School District ESOL Class. Zory also works with project life saver as an intake specialist. She has been with BHB since 2000,  She is also one of our Spanish/English translators at BHB. When not at work, Zoraida loves being with her family and helping children in need, as she has been a foster parent since 1991. She also likes to bake and make homemade cakes with intricate icing designs.