Laila Benitez Joins Hospital District Board of Directors

July 25, 2019 (TELLURIDE) -- The Telluride Hospital District (THD) announced this week the appointment of Laila Benitez onto its Board of Directors. 

“Laila is precisely the right person to join our effort at this critical time,” said THD President, Richard Betts. 

In April, the THD announced a Memo of Understanding had been signed with Genesee Properties regarding the potential donation of a 2.6 acre parcel of land at Society Turn for development of a new medical facility.

The conveyance of the parcel as a donation is conditioned upon Genesee Properties securing these land use entitlements from San Miguel County that meet Genesee Properties development goals.  

Benitez has served on the Mountain Village Town Council since July of 2015 and has served as Mayor since July of 2017.

“The Telluride Medical Center’s impact on all our lives cannot be overstated. There are many challenges before us, such as our vital need for a facility, and I’m looking forward to working my hardest to help this board meet its goals on behalf of our community,” said Benitez. 

Prior to moving to Mountain Village, Benitez designed and directed clinical research studies focused on the use of ablative lasers in the treatment of coronary artery disease and liver cancer. She graduated from California State University at Fullerton with a B.S. degree in Biological Sciences, with an emphasis in tumor immunology.

In 2015, Benitez worked with colleagues from Mountain Village, Telluride and San Miguel County to draft and pass a ballot measure to form the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART). She served as the Chair of SMART from November 2016 through January 2019. 

Additionally, Benitez serves on the Telluride Foundation and Telluride Humane Society Boards of Directors and the following Mountain Village committees: Parking and Transportation, Business Development, and Community Grants Committees.

“Laila cares deeply for the community, I’m certain she will be vital to our efforts as we work to secure the new medical home that this community needs and deserves,” said Betts.  

Benitez replaces Davis Fansler who has served on the THD Board since 2015.

“Davis brought so much to this board — considering his community commitment and knowledge of hospitals, I can’t think of anyone else aside from Laila that could possibly fill his shoes,” said Betts.