CEO-elect of Ballad Health abruptly retires

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Bart Hove, who was selected to serve as CEO of Ballad Health, unexpectedly retired Feb. 1, according to a Times News report.

Ballad Health, which is yet to launch, will be formed by the merger of Kingsport, Tenn.-based Wellmont Health System and Johnson City, Tenn.-based Mountain States Health Alliance. The transaction is expected to close in early 2018. In November 2017, the two entities announced an inaugural board of directors, and Mr. Hove was named a board member as well as the CEO-designee of Ballad Health.

Mr. Hove announced his retirement in a letter to the Ballad Health board, writing, "At this juncture in the road, it becomes an opportunity for my wife Marsha and me to continue on another journey, and thus I am announcing my retirement effective February 1, 2018. Thank you for having placed the trust and confidence in me to this point," according to the Times News report.

Mr. Hove came out of retirement in 2014 to serve as CEO of Wellmont Health System. He is equipped with 30-plus years of healthcare leadership experience and has been recognized by numerous professional societies over the course of his career, including by the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Alan Levine, who is executive chairman-elect and president-elect of Ballad Health, will step in as CEO and consult with the board regarding future leadership of the organization.

"The Ballad Health board of directors has total confidence in [Mr. Levine] and the management team he and [Mr. Hove] assembled, and we stand behind the work they are doing," said David Lester, lead independent director of the Ballad Health board, to the Times News.

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