The Rockland County Legislature Multi-Services Committee voted unanimously in favor of the appointment of Dr. Laura Carbone to the position of chief medical examiner for the Rockland County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Carbone took over as acting chief medical examiner last October after the resignation of Dr. Mark Taff, and County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef requested the legislature confirm her appointment earlier this week. The appointment will go before the full legislature next week, and if they vote in favor of Carbone, the appointment will go back to Vanderhoef so he can sign off on it.
Carbone has been the deputy medical examiner since 2006 and previously worked as a medical examiner in the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office for eight years. Prior to that, Carbone received her Forensic Pathology training at the NYC Office of Chief Medical Examiner and completed her combined Anatomic and Clinical Pathology residency at the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City.
“I say jokingly that I went from a great lake to a pond and now to a puddle, only in the sense that I have experience from a very large office, one of the largest in the country, and then to a smaller office,” Carbone said at Tuesday’s meeting. “Bergen County was a bit larger than the office here in Rockland County, so I feel I have a breadth of experience to bring here to Rockland County and to move forward and keep the office with its mission and goal to maintain community service and provide those services to the county.”
At the meeting, a few legislators asked her about issues they heard about the previous medical examiner. Legislator Joseph Meyers asked her about the office’s relationship with organ donation, as he was told the relationship was somewhat strained.
“That was an issue that was addressed at the time and has since been rectified,” Carbone said. “There’s a very good standing relationship with the organ donor network.”
She said she’s had officials involved with organ donation into the office for a tour as well.
Legislator Jay Hood asked about the office’s relationship with Rockland County Police Chiefs’ Association, and law enforcement in general.
“Just after I came into the acting title, I did meet with the Police Chiefs’ Association,” Carbone said. “I assured them that I was hoping to mend fences, reestablish strained relationships. We rely heavily on law enforcement for our job and vice versa, so it’s a collaboration and I wanted them to be clear that that was my intent.”
Legislator Chris Carey asked if she was planning on replacing her old position as deputy medical examiner. Carbone said she thinks they will abolish the position.
Chairwoman of the Legislature Harriet Cornell doesn’t sit on the Multi-Services Committee, but attended the meeting to be there for the appointment and show her support for Carbone.
“In addition to the experience that Dr. Carbone indicated, she has such a superb background not only academically, but in terms of the academic appointments where she has been teaching, publications she has written on a variety of subjects and I think that we’re very, very fortunate to have you, Dr. Carbone,” Cornell said. “I’m very, very impressed with your background and I know you’re going to do a good job for us."