The Eagle - April 11, 2001
CAMBRIDGE - On April 6, 2001 a Video Conference was held between US Army Reserve members of the 154th Legal Support Organization, the 7th Legal Support Organization and their counterparts in Arlington, VA. The three Reservist attending this "test case" were Cambridge Attorney Major John Imhof; Attorney 1st, Lieutenant Josh Toas, Assistant Secretary of State and Specialist Matthew Hart, 3rd year Law Student at Albany Law School. The Video Conference was interactive and the first time any of three had participated in this type of exercise. Colonel White, a Military Judge on active duty, lectured from Arlington VA, via Video Conferencing, on Trial Advocacy and stressed Trial Tactics, Current Court Procedures and the Presentation of Evidence. Four other sites were to participate in the conference but only the site at Mary McClellan Hospital was up and running.
The technology at McClellan that enabled the conference to take place is the result of work by Dr. David Bonner, President and CEO of the non-profit Adirondack Area Network. Dr. Bonner is the Director of Sage Technology Initiatives at the Sage Colleges. The Adirondack Area Network is a teleconferencing and telemedicine system that serves a wide variety of educational and health care facilities. Funding for the video conference equipment at McClellan was awarded through a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1998. Verizon provided additional start up money for the project.
Cathy Sheldon, RN, a Clinical Analyst in the Information System Department at McClellan, coordinated the event. Major John Imhof said, "Cathy was fantastic! I turned the project over to her and she did all the coordination and leg work to make the program a success."
The video conference program at McClellan is being utilized to provide hospital staff and the community educational opportunities without having to spend and incur travel expenses. Other creative new programs and uses for this technology are currently being developed at McClellan.
"We are on the cutting edge of the technology," said Cathy Sheldon. "What occurred April 6th is just the beginning of what we can accomplish right here in rural Washington County...we have the technology and the expertise to make wonderful things happen."
Pictured below are the reservists who participated in the video conference.