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R-AHEC receives grant to support renovations of the Thiel Hospitality House From The John R. Oishei Foundation

Warsaw, NY (January 8, 2018) – Western New York Rural Area Health Education Center (R-AHEC) announces its award of a generous $110,000 grant towards the organizations upcoming renovation of the William F. Thiel Hospitality House. R-AHEC submitted an application to The John R. Oishei Foundation requesting a capital support grant for renovations and repairs to the house located in Warsaw, NY. The grant was reviewed and authorized in December by the Directors of the Foundation.

R-AHEC’s Chief Executive Officer, Catherine P. Huff said, “R-AHEC is very thankful to the Directors of the John R. Oishei Foundation for their strong support of our project and their confidence in our planned renovations. On behalf of the R-AHEC Board of Directors I thank the John R. Oishei Foundation for this very generous contribution. This donation underscores the important role that the Hospitality House serves in Wyoming County.”

R-AHEC owns and operates the William F. Thiel Hospitality House located behind the Wyoming County Community Hospital. The mission of R-AHEC is to improve health and healthcare through education. The House was originally constructed and opened for guests in 2005. The House primarily provides individuals or families facing a health care crisis and on-call or visiting medical professionals (short and long term stays). In addition, half the house is committed for use by health professions and medical students performing clinical rural rotations in Wyoming County with the ultimate goal that they will consider serving a medically underserved area/population upon graduation. According to Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) Wyoming County is considered a medically underserved/population area in New York State.

“We are pleased to be working with In. Site: Architecture, a local architect firm right here in Wyoming County” said David Riddell, R-AHEC Director of Operations. Riddell stated, “They have been able to articulate well for us our need to renovate and design a space to make it more flexible for our guests and to increase occupancy ability in the years to come.” Architect Rick Hauser, said “In. Site: Architecture is pleased to be able to help R-AHEC to reimagine Thiel House to better meet guests’
needs and serve the community. Revamped accommodations will be more comfortable, more healthful, and be a better fit for the lifestyles of its primary residents. We look forward to seeing this project through completion.”

The renovations are expected to start during the summer of 2018 with completion before the end of the year.

R-AHEC was formed in 1999 as a non-profit organization, serving a 12-county region of Western New York. Its mission is “to improve health and healthcare through education.” R-AHEC focuses on Health Workforce Development; Preceptor Development/Student Housing; Pipeline Programming; and Rural Healthcare Technology Infrastructure Development. In addition, R-AHEC operates the Western NY Rural Broadband Healthcare Network (RBHN), providing subsidies to non-profit healthcare facilities through a point to point fiber optic network. For more information, visit R-AHEC’s website at or the RBHN at

The John R. Oishei Foundation enhances the economic vitality and quality of life for the Buffalo Niagara region through grantmaking, leadership and network building. The Foundation was established in 1940 by John R. Oishei, founder of Trico Products Corporation. For more information, visit the Foundations website at


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