on November 24, 2013 - 7:46 PM
Aug. 24, 1945 – Nov. 22, 2013
James R. Dwyer, a co-founder and chief financial officer of Health Force, a leading local home health care provider, died Friday in his Orchard Park home after a battle with lung cancer. He was 68.
Mr. Dwyer established Health Force in 1984 and oversaw its growth until his retirement in 2012. He served on numerous boards and advisory committees that helped set up standards on home health care in New York State and had been treasurer of the New York State Association of Health Care Providers.
Born in Bradford, Pa., he served in ROTC as he majored in accounting at St. Bonaventure University, and was hired as a staff accountant by Price Waterhouse & Co. in Buffalo before he graduated with honors in 1967.
Before taking his job at Price Waterhouse, he served in the Army from 1968 to 1970 as a first lieutenant and was battery commander of a Nike Missile site.
Price Waterhouse promoted him to senior accountant in 1971, and a year later he became controller at Greene & Kellogg, a provider of respiratory, anesthesia and specialized medical equipment to health care institutions and home care patients.
He was named vice president for finance in 1975 and oversaw installation of the company’s first computer system. Later that year he was appointed vice president for operations. During his three years in that post, he engineered the acquisition of a small research and development firm that introduced Greene & Kellogg into the oxygen concentrator business.
In 1978, he became president of the company, a post he held for five years. He oversaw consolidation of the company into a single headquarters building and produced an annual growth rate of more than 25 percent, then left to found Health Force.
“He saw the need for people in home health care,” said his former wife, Patricia Krall-Dwyer, who established Health Force with him.
“It’s a Florence Nightengale industry. That’s what he believed in.”
An avid sports fan, he enjoyed attending Formula One races at Watkins Glen and Mosport, Ont., as well as college basketball, the Bills and the Sabres.
Survivors include a son, Sean M.; two daughters, Erin K. Paglione and Trisha McGinley; two sisters, Sister Mary Ellen and Marian Vorp; and a granddaughter.
A memorial service today will be private.