Member Spotlight: Andrew Komar

Surrounded by natural beauty, Catawba Hospital is located ten miles from the City of Salem and seventeen miles from Roanoke. Catawba Hospital is part of the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services. The vision of the Hospital is EXCELLENCE in Clinical Service, Consumer Recovery and Corporate Stewardship.  At Catawba we specialize in serving adults who need mental health care and offer both short-term "acute care" units and dedicated geriatric units.

The Hospital is affiliated with the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, where staff psychiatrists may have faculty appointments and help train psychiatry residents and medical students. A clinical practicum is available for students of various disciplines including nursing, psychology, social work, music therapy, recreation therapy, and food and nutritional services.

This Month, NSPA is proud to highlight Andrew Komar, Director of Public Safety and Emergency Management at Catawba Hospital! Catawba Hospital has partnered with NSPA for ___ years now.

I have always invested and found great personal gratification in serving others.  I believe that my peers here at Catawba share that passion and even amplify it from their clinical perspectives. I have served in many capacities before my current position; I Joined the Pennsylvania Army National Guard then I began a 7 year stay as a Correctional Officer in Dauphin County Pennsylvania where I spent 2 years on the Correctional Emergency Response Team (CERT).

In 2003, while still employed at Dauphin County, I was deployed with the 28th Infantry Division, Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade for Operation Enduring Freedom and The Global War on Terrorism and spent 14 months in Kosovo. In 2007, I moved on to work as a civilian Federal Police Officer for the US Department of Veterans Affairs in Pittsburgh, PA and then made a lateral move as a Police Officer to the Defense Logistics Agency.  In 2009, Andrew accepted a position as an Immigration Enforcement Agent with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) which brought me to the Roanoke Area.  While with ICE, I served as a member of the Washington D.C. Field Offices’ Fugitive Operations Team and as a Defensive Tactics Instructor.

In early 2018, I accepted a part-time position at Catawba and immediately fell in love with the amazing staff and the beautiful campus.  In November of 2018 I accepted my current positions knowing that I had some pretty big shoes to fill that were left by my predecessor, especially in Emergency Management.  In the past I was a “boots on the ground” responder.

Now, I am taking that experience and combining it with my new experiences as an Emergency Manager.  I am accomplishing goals through guidance from my senior leadership and NSPA member Charles Law, along with the many other talented individuals I get to work with daily.  I am fortunate to have opportunities to train with NSPA and other community partners to help strengthen our ability to network, plan for and respond to emergencies.  I have recently had the pleasure of completing NSPA and NDLSF hosted CHEC I, CHEC II and BDLS courses. I intend to fulfill the requirements and reach CHEC III as soon as possible so I can best serve Catawba Hospital and our community partners.  Through shared training, education and experience we can achieve great things and provide our patients and communities the care they so rightfully deserve.