Members & Staff
Ex-Officio Members

As outlined in the Authority's by-laws, the Authority consists of seven members, three of whom are ex-officio (namely: the Commissioner of Health, the Commissioner of Human Services and the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance).


Cathleen D. Bennett, Chairperson

Cathleen D. Bennett (photo) (Serves during her term as Commissioner of the Department of Health)

Cathleen Bennett began serving as Acting Commissioner of the Department of Health on August 3, 2015. She was confirmed by the State Senate on May 26, 2016.

Bennett joined the Department as Director of Policy and Strategic Planning in August 2010.

As head of the Policy and Strategic Planning, she directed strategic public health and healthcare delivery initiatives including healthcare quality assessment, health statistics and informatics, population health and health equity, regional health planning, and health information technology.

Prior to joining the Department, Bennett spent 20 years as an executive in the private sector, providing consulting, strategy, and management services to federal and state health and human services agencies. Bennett holds a Master of Government Administration from the University of Pennsylvania, a Juris Doctorate from The Dickinson School of Law, and a Bachelor of Arts from Villanova University.

She lives in Haddonfield with her husband and daughter.


Elizabeth Connolly

Photo of Elizabeth Connolly Acting Commissioner New Jersey Department of Human Services (Serves during her term as Acting Commissioner of the Department of Human Services )

Elizabeth Connolly became the Department’s Acting Commissioner on February 28, 2015. She has worked in various roles at the department for 26 years, most recently as Chief of Staff. She began her career in the department’s Division of Family Development and worked in child welfare reform as Director of Data Analysis and Reporting in the Office of Children’s Services. Ms. Connolly also served as Director of Research and Evaluation, Special Assistant to the Commissioner and led the department’s Sandy recovery initiatives and emergency preparedness activities related to Ebola Virus Disease. She lives in North Brunswick and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and Masters in Public Administration from Seton Hall University.

DHS has the largest budget in state government, with over 15,000 employees - approximately 75-percent of them serving as direct care workers in the state-run developmental centers and psychiatric hospitals. About one in six New Jersey residents is impacted by the work of DHS.

The Department works in partnership with the Administration on initiatives including: Medicaid reform; advancing supported placement of individuals with developmental disabilities and mental illness in the community; creating employment opportunities for people with disabilities; and sustaining the safety-net of services made available for the state's older population, and individuals and families with low income.


Richard J. Badolato

Richard J. Badolata (photo)

Member (serves during his tenure as Commissioner of the Department of Banking and Insurance)

Richard J. Badolato, a veteran civil litigator and partner in the Connell Foley law firm in Roseland was named Acting Commissioner of the Department of Banking and Insurance by Governor Chris Christie on June 22, 2015. He was confirmed by the State Senate on May 26, 2016.

Mr. Badolato’s legal career of nearly five decades has been marked by service not only to his clients but also to the bar, the legal profession, and the executive and judicial branches of New Jersey state government.

His experience on the trial and appellate levels in both State and Federal Courts has included: medical, legal, and dental malpractice; products liability; all forms of general liability; construction litigation; automobile litigation; insurance coverage and policy interpretation; subrogation recovery, fire and theft losses; and declaratory judgment proceedings.

In 2013, he received the Medal of Honor from the New Jersey State Bar Foundation, the highest award given by the organization. In 2015, he was selected by the New Jersey Law Journal as winner of their first-ever “Lifetime Achievement Award” and also received the Essex County Bar Association’s Samuel S. Saiber Professional Achievement Award.

Previously, Mr. Badolato served as Chairman of the Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on Professional Ethics, the Supreme Court’s Committee on “E” Filing, and the New Jersey Commission on Ethics 20/20. He is also a former member of Governor Christie’s Advisory Panel for New Jersey Judicial Appointments.

In addition to his many other appointments, Mr. Badolato is the former president of both the New Jersey State Bar Association and the Essex County Bar Association.

Mr. Badolato earned his law degree from Rutgers University and his undergraduate degree from Fairfield University. He and his wife Betty reside in Verona. They have five children.

Public Members
Dr. Munr Kazmir

Dr. Munr Kazmir Vice Chair (term of office expires April 30, 2019)

Dr. Kazmir is the CEO of Quality Home Care Providers and founder of Direct Meds Pharmacies, Inc. and Easy Carry Inc.  He is also the founder of American School Systems which brings American values to Third World and Middle Eastern children. 

Dr. Munr Kazmir heralds a lifetime of leadership as a CEO, entrepreneur, physician, and philanthropist in the healthcare industry. Having served on numerous hospital boards, healthcare research, and healthcare advisory committees, his experience will be a great benefit to the Health Care Facilities Financing Authority. As a recipient of various humanitarian awards, Dr. Kazmir also brings a deep appreciation of the intricate and essential role of health care for the citizens of New Jersey.

Dr. Kazmir is a former Presidential Commission on the White House Fellow and is known for his bipartisan efforts on behalf of law enforcement officers and their survivors.  Dr. Kazmir is a former Commissioner of the NJ Lottery and served on the Medicare Coverage Advisory Committee and The National Advisory Council for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Over the past three decades, Dr. Kazmir has been recognized domestically and internationally for humanitarian efforts to combat juvenile diabetes, contributions of prosthetic devices to children, improving the care and rehabilitation of multi-handicapped blind children, opening a school in Asia with top-quality education and medical care, promoting democratic governance in third-world countries, and supporting law enforcement foundations throughout the United States.

In May 2011, Dr. Kazmir joined the ranks of six former presidents and Nobel Prize winners in being awarded the distinguished Ellis Island Medal of Honor for his outstanding accomplishments and upstanding citizenry. 

Dr. Kazmir graduated from the University of Punjab where he received his M.B.B.S./M.D. He completed his internal medicine internship at the White Plains Hospital/Montefiore Medical Center in New York and additional medical studies at the Methodist Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, in Houston, Texas. He also completed his PGY3 at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Department of Medicine in New York.


Suzette T. Rodriguez, Esq.

Photo of Suzette T. Rodriguez, Esq.Secretary and Treasurer (term of office expired April 30, 2013)

Suzette T. Rodriguez, Esq. is an accomplished corporate counsel with significant experience advising company personnel on matters affecting the business operations of various companies. Her specialties include civil litigation, employment law and general corporate counseling. Ms. Rodriguez has joined the firm of Blank Rome LLP, as Of Counsel in the Labor and Employment group. Previously she was in-house Associate Counsel for Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc., where she was responsible for managing defensive and affirmative litigation matters, including vicarious and direct liability claims, employment litigation, franchise litigation, and enforcing intellectual property rights. She was also responsible for advising company personnel in diverse matters affecting the business operations of the Company. 

Prior to joining Jackson Hewitt, Ms. Rodriguez worked in the Labor and Employment Departments of LeClairRyan in Newark, New Jersey and Wong Fleming in Princeton, New Jersey.   Ms. Rodriguez also served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Travis L. Francis of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division-General Equity.

Ms. Rodriguez received her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in English Literature from Hunter College, City University.  She received her Juris Doctorate from Rutgers School of Law-Newark.   While in law school, Ms. Rodriguez served as the Managing Articles Editor of the Rutgers' Race and the Law Review and was awarded a fellowship from Equal Justice America.  In addition, Ms. Rodriguez served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Marina Corodemus, Superior Court of New Jersey, Civil Division-Mass Torts.  In 2003, Ms. Rodriguez was granted the Distinguished Graduate Award by the National Catholic Educational Association for exemplifying the best qualities of catholic education and rendering distinguished service to the Catholic Church.

Ms. Rodriguez is admitted to practice law in the State of New Jersey, State of New York and the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. 

Ms. Rodriguez is currently the President of the Hispanic Bar Association of New Jersey and the Deputy Regional President (Region III) of the Hispanic National Bar Association.  She is also active in the community and serves as an Advisory Board Member for the New Jersey Educational Empowerment Project (NJLEEP), a pipeline diversity effort dedicated to increasing minority representation in the legal profession by introducing students to the law and skill building at a young age.   In December 2009, Ms. Rodriguez was appointed by Governor Jon S. Corzine to serve as a public member of the New Jersey Health Care Facilities Financing Authority, where she is currently the Secretary and serves on the Audit Evaluation Committee.


Authority Staff

All Authority staff can be reached by telephone at (609) 292-8585 followed by the staff member's extension as listed below. To reach a staff member by facsimile, send the fax the individual's attention at (609) 633-7778.

Office of the Executive Director

Mark E. Hopkins
Executive Director

Carole Conover
Executive Assistant/Office Manager
& Custodian of the Record

Robin Piotrowski, PHR, CPS
Human Resources Manager & Ethics Liaison Officer

Christopher Kniesler
Communications Specialist

John Johnson
Network Administrator

Maria Kinney
Office Management Assistant

Division of Research, Investor Relations and Compliance

Frank Troy
Director of Research, Investor Relations and Compliance

Taryn Rommell
Assistant Director of Research, Investor Relations and Compliance

Neetu Thukral
Compliance Manager

Nino McDonald
Database Analyst

Division of Project Management

William McLaughlin
Director, Project Management

Edwin Fuentes
Project Manager

Tracey D. Cameron
Administrative Assistant

Division of Operations, Finance and Special Projects

Ronald S. Marmelstein
Director, Operations, Finance & Special Projects

Marjorie P. McAvoy

Bernard J. Miller, Jr.
Construction Compliance Officer

Jessica Lucas
Account Administrator

Michael Solidum
Account Administrator

Diane Johnson
Senior Assistant Account Administrator

Debra Coons
Assistant Account Administrator

Ellen Lieber
Accountant II

Taryn Brzdek
Administrative Assistant