CDPHP CEO John Bennett to deliver 2014 commencement address at Sage

April 15, 2014 at 12:04 pm

ALBANY & TROY, NY – The Sage Colleges is pleased to announce that Capital District Physicians’ Health Plan (CDPHP) President and CEO John D. Bennett, MD, FACC, FACP, will deliver the 97th commencement address on Saturday, May 17. The ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. at the Houston Field House in Troy.John D. Bennett

Dr. Bennett was named president and CEO of CDPHP in 2008 after serving as chairman of the CDPHP board since September 2003, vice chairman since 1999, and board member since 1996.

Dr. Bennett is chair of the board of directors for the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Healthcare Information Xchange of New York (Hixny). He also serves on the boards of the Alliance of Community Health Plans, America’s Health Insurance Plans, Colonie Senior Service Centers, the American Red Cross of Northeastern New York, the Center for Economic Growth, New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC), and the Palace Theatre.

Honorary Degree Recipient

Sage will also award Chester “Chet” J. Opalka an honorary degree at this year’s ceremony. Opalka is a former trustee of The Sage Colleges and donor to the Opalka Gallery on the Sage College of Albany campus which is named in his family’s honor.

Opalka is a co-founder of Albany Molecular Research, Inc. (AMRI), a full service chemistryChet Opalka services provider to the life sciences industry. The company, founded in 1991, is based in Albany, NY. He retired from the company in September 2000.  Prior to founding AMRI, Opalka worked for 20 years at Sterling Drug Inc. in various capacities in the Discovery and Process Development Departments. He holds nearly 30 patents and has co-authored several scientific publications reporting his work in organic chemistry. One invention led to the marketed product, Inocor, the first of a novel class of drug used in the treatment of congestive heart failure. Opalka received his Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Niagara University.

Media Contact:
Deanna Cohen, director of external relations, The Sage Colleges,
(518) 244-4593 (O), (518) 598-4927 (C), email:

Interdisciplinary academics, community engagement, international exposure, and artistic and athletic endeavors are among the pillars of the educational experience at The Sage Colleges. Sage enrolls more than 3,000 students in bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs at the coeducational undergraduate Sage College of Albany in Albany, N.Y.; the undergraduate Russell Sage College for women in Troy, N.Y.; and the graduate-level Esteves School of Education, School of Health Sciences and School of Management, with programs on both campuses.