Hunterdon Healthcare System CEO to retire citing health concerns

Flemington, N.J.-based Hunterdon Healthcare System President and CEO Robert P. Wise is retiring, effective June 30.

Mr. Wise decided to retire due to stress and the toll the role took on his health.

"It has been argued the long-term stress and demands of my position are now real contributing factors and that my chronic health condition places me at greater risk of an untimely event," he wrote in an open letter to the hospital's board, staff and volunteers. "Over the past few days, I have spent many hours talking to my wife and family members. They reminded me how fortunate I was 16 years ago. It is time for me to practice what I have preached — 'Family First.'"

Mr. Wise assumed the top post at the health system in 1990. Since then, the organization's revenues have increased by 70 percent to $250 million-plus. Under his leadership, the health system also entered into an affiliation with Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, creating the Hunterdon Regional Cancer Center in Flemington, N.J.

Mr. Wise won numerous awards over the course of his career, including the New Jersey Hospital Association's Executive Leadership Services Award.

Robert Cody, MD, will become acting president and CEO. He is currently chairman of Hunterdon's board of trustees.

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