PNK Social and Health Services Committee


The Social and Health Services Committee will advocate for the strengthening of existing services and the development and implementation of needed social and health services in collaboration with County government and business leaders, the citizens of New Kent County and the Committee.

Committee Members

Deborah S. Briggs, BSN, MBA, Chair

Deborah Briggs is a skilled leader and thoughtleader. Her career in healthcare led to many opportunities; creating a nationally recognized care management company, directing the strategic operations of the New Jersey Council of Teaching Hospitals, performing ground-breaking research that defined improvement opportunities and the needed resources to build a stronger primary care physician workforce.

Over the last ten years, this comprehensive research and data reporting led to numerous improvements in the medical education curriculum and infrastructure, within the four medicals schools and the eighteen academic medical centers in New Jersey. Additionally, the state of New Jersey increased graduate medical education funding from $30M to over $250M annually, based on this research. The new funding allowed teaching institutions to focus on “physicians of the future” competencies and increasing retention throughout the state’s healthcare workforce. This decade of effort generated new skills; an appreciation for the art of negotiating and devotion to local, state and federal representative education and advocacy.

In addition to her healthcare career, Deborah is an equine entrepreneur, running a boutique equestrian center in Bucks County, PA. She has been breeding, training and caring for horses for over 40 years. In 2016, she combined her expertise gained in these two careers and developed the Physician CUES curriculum which focuses on developing awareness of the subtleties of non-verbal communication and listening skills to create stronger relationships and trust between patients and their physician. One interactive work session, within the Physician CUES two-day learning session, works with horses to develop communication competencies in areas of self-awareness of body positions, including facial and body signals; improving vocal tones that exhibits respect and empathy; and including silence and other non-verbal cues to create patient engagement that builds optimal physician – patient partnerships. The Physician CUES interactive work session has been offered to medical students, residents, practicing physicians and other healthcare professionals.

Deborah grew up in the Midwest, moving to a farm at age 10 where she developed a passion for gardening and surrounding herself with many four-legged friends.

Jill Cruz
Dr. Gail A. Gilden

Since 2014, Dr. Gail Gilden is retired from the College of Nursing, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston, South Carolina. During her 22 years of service with MUSC she served many faculty roles including Doctoral Program Director, Associate Dean for Academics, and Department Chair. She taught undergraduate and graduate courses and secured extensive research and program funding from Health Resources and Services Administration, National Institutes of Health, Department of Justice, Duke Endowment Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. A notable career achievement was transforming the PhD in Nursing Program to an online format; developing it to one of the largest and successful doctoral nursing programs in the US, ranking as #1 among graduate online programs in 2013 by US News and World Report.

In retirement, Gail enjoys travel and managing an Italian charcuterie business, Terra di Siena USA LLC, located in Amelia, VA. She also devotes time to the Latisha’s House Foundation, which provides safe shelter for women rescued from human trafficking.

Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland: 1995 (ScD)
University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, Maryland: 1983 (MSN)
University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, Maryland: 1975 (BSN)

George R. McBeath, M.D.

Professional Experience:
Family Medicine Physician, Williamsburg, VA: 1991-2019 (Retired 9/2019)
Williamsburg Family Medicine, Williamsburg, VA: 2006-2019
– Shareholder in Tidewater Physician Multispecialty Group
– Member of Finance Committee: 2008-2014
– Member of Investment/Retirement Committee: 2014-2019

The College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA: 1979-1983 (B.S. Biology)
Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia, Richmond, VA: 1983-1987 (M.D.)
Chesterfield Family Practice Residency, Chesterfield, VA: 1987-1990

Angels of Mercy, Williamsburg, VA: 2001-Present (Medical Advisor)
Walsingham Academy, Williamsburg, VA: 2016- Present (Board of Trustees, Facilities Chairman)
Member of Williamsburg Mennonite Church


Minutes of Meetings

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