2014 Up & Comers: Healthcare Leaders Committed to Community

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Fearless, innovative, and civic-minded. These are the traits that distinguish this year’s class of Modern Healthcare Up & Comers, says Andrew Chastain in his introduction to this year’s awards coverage.

Andrew Chastain

Andrew Chastain

These also happen to be characteristics of millennials, Chastain notes, the oldest of which are now making moves into their late thirties and into management. The twelve Up & Comers honored by Modern Healthcare this year exemplify the energy and dynamism of the millennial generation, bringing their fresh perspectives and experiences to the C-Suite table.

The recipients, ranging from age 34 to 40, include five CEOs, three COOs, three VPs, and one Chief of Staff. Here are a few highlights:

  • At age 34, Mario Garner is the youngest recipient and the first ever CEO of the New Orleans East Hospital, which was built on the same sight as the Pendleton Memorial Methodist Hospital—a victim of the Hurricane Katrina floods in 2005.
  • Benjamin Anderson took over as CEO of Kearny County Hospital in Lakin, Kansas, and implemented an innovative recruitment strategy to bring skilled clinicians to the rural hospital by allowing them to take up to six weeks leave for international or national missionary work. His idea was inspired by his own missionary work traveling to rural Zimbabwe.
  • Upon taking up the position of Chief Operating Officer at the Boston Medical Center, Dr. Alastair Bell faced a $175 million deficit and a possible bankruptcy. Bell developed a strategic plan to heal the problem, resulting in financial surpluses as well as significant improvements in clinical quality scores.

For the 17th year, Witt/Kieffer is proud to sponsor Modern Healthcare’s Up & Comers awards.

“These young executives seem to have no inhibitions about fast-tracking their careers and championing new initiatives at their organizations and in their communities,” says Chastain of the fearless Up & Comers.

The twelve winners think outside-the-box and make innovations that improve the quality of life and service at their hospitals. They all have connections to their roots and are motivated by a desire to give back to the communities they serve.

Up & Comer Gyasi Chisley with WK Advisors Associate Gwen Smith-Jenkins at NAHSE Conference

Up & Comer Gyasi Chisley with WK Advisors Associate Gwen Smith-Jenkins at NAHSE Conference

This civic-minded philosophy ties well to the growing emphasis on improving the patient experience and looking holistically at health, not just ER visits but prevention and well-being. For instance, Gyasi Chisley, CEO of Methodist Healthcare North in Memphis (and Senior VP of Methodist Healthcare) is leading a project in tandem with the city of Memphis, to turn an abandoned mall into retail and community health and wellness space.

Each winner was nominated by someone within the healthcare industry, often within their own hospital system or a mentor, proving that these millennial movers and shakers are not only fearless, innovated, and civic-minded, but they’re also skilled networkers and team players. The millennial movement is on the rise in healthcare; the following dozen executives are leading the way:

Benjamin Anderson, CEO, Kearny County Hospital, Lakin, KS

Dr. Alistair Bell, COO, Boston Medical Center

Gyasi Chisley, CEO, Methodist Healthcare North, SVP, Methodist Healthcare, Memphis

Mario Garner, CEO, New Orleans Hospital East

Dr. Bryce Gartland, VP of Operations, Emory University Hospital, Atlanta

Carolyn Jackson, CEO, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Philadelphia

Dr. Arby Nahapetian, VP of Medical Affairs and Quality, Glendale (CA) Adventist Medical Center

Jonathan Nalli, CEO, St. Vincent Health, Indianapolis

Sarah Pacini, VP of Risk Management and Insurance, Advocate Health Care, Downers Grove, IL

Jeff Patterson, COO, Desert Regional Medical Center, Palm Springs, CA

Ije-Enu Udeze, Chief of Staff, Office of the CEO, Kaiser Permanente, Oakland, CA

Nathan White, COO, Sanford Health, Sioux Falls, SD


Related Reading:

A Witt/Kieffer Survey on Past & Present Modern Healthcare Up & Comers

A Witt/Kieffer Survey on Past & Present Modern Healthcare Up & Comers

Last year, we surveyed more than 300 Up & Comers honorees from past years to understand what has made a difference in their climbs up the ladder. One unifying thread we heard over and over was the importance of mentors who taught them the ropes and provided meaningful counsel. Here’s the full report: Great Expectations: What Makes a Rising Star?





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