56 Women Hospital and Healthcare Leaders to Know

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Becker's Hospital Review has named the following female leaders to its annual list, "56 Women Hospital and Healthcare Leaders to Know." These 56 women demonstrate outstanding leadership within the hospital and healthcare industry and were chosen based on a wide range of critical management and leadership skills, including oversight of hospital or health system operations, financial turnarounds and quality improvement initiatives.

Note: Individuals cannot pay for inclusion on the list. Names are presented in alphabetical order.

Marna P. Borgstrom. President and CEO, Yale-New Haven (Conn.) Hospital. Ms. Borgstrom, president and CEO of Yale-New Haven Hospital, also heads Yale-New Haven Health System, the hospital's parent. In office since 2005, she is the first woman to run the organization. She has held numerous executive positions from 1985 up to her appointment to president and CEO. Ms. Borgstrom joined Yale-New Haven Hospital in 1979 as an administrative fellow.

Ruth W. Brinkley. President and CEO, Carondelet Health Network (Tucson, Ariz.). Ms. Brinkley is president and CEO of Carondelet Health Network, which operates four hospitals in Southern Arizona. She also serves as west ministry market leader for Ascension Health, supervising the faith-based missions of hospitals in several western states. Ms. Brinkley previously served as CEO of Memorial Health Care System in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Noel Brown Williams. Senior Vice President and CIO, HCA Information Technology and Services (Nashville, Tenn.). As president of HCA IT, Ms. Brown Williams is responsible for HCA's IT strategy and overall operation of the system's IT services. Ms. Brown Williams assumed her post in Sept. 1997 after serving as CIO for America Service Group in Brentwood, Tenn. She has more than 30 years of experience in healthcare IT.

Janice Burger. CEO, Providence St. Vincent Medical Center (Portland, Ore.). As the CEO of Providence St. Vincent Medical Center since 2005, Ms. Burger is responsible for the oversight of approximately 3,500 staff members working in hospitals in Oregon and Washington. She has been working for Providence Health System, also based in Portland, Ore., since 1986.

Diane Corrigan. CFO, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia). Ms. Corrigan has been CFO of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, part of the University of Pennsylvania Health System, since 2000. When Ms. Corrigan came on board, the hospital had experienced three straight years of losses. In her first year, HUP achieved an operating margin of 5.7 percent and has maintained a margin of more than 10 percent for the past four years.

Susan Croushore. President and CEO, The Christ Hospital (Cincinnati). As president and CEO of The Christ Hospital, Ms. Croushore has focused on workforce retention and quality improvement. The 555-bed hospital includes more than 1,000 physicians and has been serving patients for more than 120 years. Ms. Croushore previously served as CEO of Jeanes Hospital-Temple University Health System in Pennsylvania and was trained as a microbiologist.

Jacque Daniels. Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Novant Health (Winston-Salem, N.C.). As executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Novant Health, Ms. Daniels oversees several departments, including information technology, marketing and public relations and government relations. Ms. Daniels joined Novant in 1982 as a medical technologist and clinical educator in the pathology department for Forsyth Medical Center, also in Winston-Salem.

Laurie Eberst, RN. President and CEO, Catholic Healthcare West Ventura County Market Service Area and St. John's Regional Medical Center (Oxnard, Calif.). Ms. Eberst is the president and CEO of Catholic Healthcare West Ventura County Market Service Area and St. John's Regional Medical Center. She previously served as president of Mercy Gilbert (Ariz.) Medical Center and senior vice president of clinical services and chief nurse executive at CHW's St. Bernardine Medical Center in San Bernadino, Calif.

Linda Efferen, MD. Senior Vice President and CMO, South Nassau Communities Hospital (Oceanside, N.Y.). Dr. Efferen serves as senior vice president and CMO of South Nassau Communities Hospital, where she holds responsibility for facilitating medical staff interactions with hospital administration and overseeing strategic planning and execution, among other duties. Prior to her appointment at South Nassau, Dr. Efferen was associate chair in the department of medicine at Long Island Jewish Medical Center for more than eight years.

Melinda Estes, MD. CEO, Saint Luke's Health System (Kansas City, Mo.). Dr. Estes has been the CEO of Saint Luke's Health System since June 2011. Prior to joining Saint Luke's, Dr. Estes served at Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, Vt., for nearly eight years, eventually becoming president and CEO. She also previously served in a leadership position at the Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston and Naples, Fla.

Georgia Fojtasek. President and CEO, Allegiance Health (Jackson, Mich.). Ms. Fojtasek is president and CEO of Allegiance Health, a regional healthcare provider that operates 40 facilities across six counties in Michigan. Previously, she was senior vice president and COO of Allegiance. Ms. Fojtasek was also a delegate to the American Hospital Association Regional Policy Board. She is also chair of Voluntary Hospitals of America Central Region.

Suzanne H. Freeman, RN. President, Carolinas Medical Center (Charlotte, N.C.). Ms. Freeman is the president of Carolinas Medical Center, which is part of Carolinas HealthCare System. Ms. Freeman is responsible for planning and directing all operations of Carolinas Medical Center, including Sanger Heart & Vascular Institute, Levine Cancer Institute and Levine Children's Hospital. Ms. Freeman joined CHS in 1975 as a staff nurse.

Mary Freyer. COO, Little Company of Mary Hospital (Evergreen Park, Ill.). Ms. Freyer has served as COO of Little Company of Mary Hospital since 2003. Prior to being named COO, she served the hospital as vice president and director of quality resource management, manager of laboratory services, supervisor of the microbiology department and several other roles. She has been a key leader throughout the hospital's current $150 million replacement patient tower construction project.

Patricia Gabow, MD. CEO, Denver Health. Dr. Gabow, a nephrologist, is CEO of Denver Health, which consists of a 477-bed hospital and a teaching institute affiliated with the University of Colorado. The system also includes a network of clinics in schools and neighborhoods, the public health department and the 911 response system for the city and county of Denver. Dr. Gabow joined Denver Health in 1973 as chief of the renal division.

Deborah L. Gorbach. Vice President of Accounting, Akron (Ohio) General Medical Center. Ms. Gorbach was appointed as vice president of accounting at Akron General Medical Center in March 2006. Ms. Gorbach also served as interim CFO from 2007-2011 until Stephen M. Gary was named senior vice president and CFO.

Pauline Grant. CEO, North Broward Medical Center (Pompano Beach, Fla.). Ms. Grant is the CEO of North Broward Medical Center, the second-largest hospital in Broward Health System. Under her leadership, NBMC was first in the nation to attain Joint Commission Certification for its Alzheimer's disease program, first in Florida to attain Joint Commission Certification for stroke rehabilitation and the first hospital in Broward County to attain Joint Commission Certification for hip and knee replacement.

Barbara Greene. President, Franciscan Physicians Hospital (Munster, Ind.). Ms. Greene is the president of Franciscan Physicians Hospital, which is a joint venture between hospital physicians and the non-profit Franciscan Alliance, based in Mishawaka, Ind. She has served in executive positions at other facilities, including Saint Margaret Mercy Healthcare Centers in Hammond, Ind., and Provena's St. Mary's Hospital in Kankakee, Ill.

Diana Hendel. President and CEO, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, Miller Children's Hospital Long Beach and Community Hospital Long Beach (Long Beach, Calif.). Ms. Hendel is responsible for overseeing ongoing operations, more than 7,000 employees and 1,500 physicians. She began her career at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center as a clinical pharmacy resident before climbing through the leadership ranks and coming full circle to lead the helm of all three hospitals.

M. Michelle Hood. President and CEO, Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems (Brewer, Maine). Ms. Hood is president and CEO of Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems, a seven-hospital health system. Ms. Hood's previous leadership experience includes time as CEO of St. Vincent Healthcare in Billings, Mont., associate hospital director at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Ga., executive vice president and COO of St. Vincent's Hospital (of Ascension Health) in Birmingham, Ala., and chief administrative officer of Norton Hospital in Louisville, Ky.

Constance A. Howes. President and CEO, Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island (Providence, R.I.). Ms. Howes is president and CEO of Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, which specializes in the care of women and newborns. Previously, she served as executive vice president and COO of Women & Infants and was formerly vice president and general counsel for Care New England Health System, also in Providence.

Karen Ignagni. President and CEO, America's Health Insurance Plans (Washington, D.C.). Ms. Ignagni is the president and CEO of America's Health Insurance Plans, the trade association representing the country's insurance providers. She was the leader of the American Association of Health Plans before it merged with the Health Insurance Association of America to form AHIP. Ms. Ignagni also directed the AFL-CIO's Department of Employee Benefits and served as a professional staff member of the U.S. Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee.

Deborah Carey Johnson, RN. President and CEO, Eastern Maine Medical Center (Bangor, Maine). Before becoming president and CEO of Eastern Maine Medical Center, Ms. Johnson began her time with Eastern Maine as a staff nurse in the Critical Care Unit. Ms. Johnson was president of the Organization of Maine Nurse Executives from 1990-1992 and has served on several boards, including the Maine Hospital Association. Ms. Johnson is also an executive vice president of Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems.

Jan Jones. Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Providence Health & Services (Renton, Wash.). Ms. Jones, who has been with Providence since 1998, works closely with regional leadership to ensure the ongoing development of effective system processes. Previously, she worked with Providence as a senior consultant, regional director for strategic implementation and interim CEO for the region.

Laura Kaiser. President and CEO, Sacred Heart Health System (Pensacola, Fla.). Ms. Kaiser is president and CEO of Sacred Heart Health System, which is a member of Ascension Health and parent-company to the 466-bed campus of Sacred Heart Hospital, Sacred Heart Children's Hospital and Sacred Heart Women's Hospital. The system has more than 700 primary care and specialty physicians. Ms. Kaiser moved into this position in 2009 after serving as Sacred Heart's COO since she joined the system in 2008.

Donna Katen-Bahensky. President and CEO, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics (Madison, Wis.). Before joining University of Wisconsin, Ms. Katen-Bahensky held numerous executive positions at health systems across the country, including the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and Iowa Health Care in Iowa City. She is also currently a member of the administrative board of the Council of Teaching Hospitals of the Association of American Medical Colleges.

Jane Keller, RN. CEO, Indiana Orthopaedic Hospital (Indianapolis). Ms. Keller is the CEO of physician-owned Indiana Orthopaedic Hospital, a position she has held since 2006. Prior to her appointment to CEO, Ms. Keller served as the hospital's chief nursing officer and OrthoIndy's executive director/nursing director of the surgery centers. In addition, Ms. Keller is a member of the Association of Operating Room Nurses, National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses and National Association of Professional Women.

Christy Kindler. Vice President/CIO, University Community Health (Tampa, Fla.). Ms. Kindler is the vice president/CIO for University Community Health, comprised of four hospitals in Florida. Ms. Kindler is currently spearheading a project to implement advanced clinical systems across the healthcare system, with the first go-live date scheduled for Dec. 2011. UCH, Ms. Kindler also grew the clinical informatics department from seven staff members to 20.

Margaret Lewis, RN. President, HCA Capital Division (Richmond, Va.). As president of HCA's Capital Division, Ms. Lewis is responsible for overseeing facilities in northern, central and southwestern Virginia, New Hampshire, Indiana and Kentucky. Ms. Lewis first joined HCA as a student nurse at Chippenham Medical Center in Richmond, Va., eventually serving in executive roles at several HCA facilities.

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