33 nurses who transitioned to hospital CEOs

Hospital executives may come from many walks of life, with many leaders also having experience in nursing.

Here are 33 nurses who are CEOs of hospitals and health systems.

Nancy Agee, RN, MN, has served as the president and CEO of Carilion Clinic in Roanoke, Va., since July 2011. From 2001 to 2011, Ms. Agee was Carilion Clinic's executive vice president and COO, and played an integral role in transforming Carilion into a patient-centered, physician-led clinic. The American Hospital Association appointed Ms. Agee to its board of trustees, a role she assumed on Jan. 1, 2016.

Jean Anthony, RN, is CEO of Cass City, Mich.-based Hills and Dales General Hospital, and has been with the hospital for more than 40 years. During her time at Hills and Dales General Hospital, Ms. Anthony served as COO for 14 years until her appointment as CEO in 2014. She began her career at the hospital as a licensed practical nurse before becoming a registered nurse and receiving a bachelor's degree in nursing and a master's in organizational management.

Linda Bradley, RN, JD, is the CEO and chair of the governing board for Centinela Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles. She has served as the hospital's CEO since May 2010. She completed her nursing degree in San Bernardino, Calif., and earned her juris doctor degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego.

Ruth Brinkley, RN, MSN, is the president and CEO of Louisville-based KentuckyOne Health. Ms. Brinkley has held these positions since KentuckyOne's inception in January 2012. She holds a master's of nursing degree from DePaulUniversity in Chicago.

Katherine Bunting, PhD, RN, MSN, is CEO of Fairfield (Ill.) Memorial Hospital and has been with the hospital since 1998. Prior to joining Memorial Hospital, she worked at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney, Ill., for nearly 20 years. She is a past president of the Illinois Hospital Association Region 5.

Christine Candio, RN, FACHE, is the president and CEO of St. Luke's Hospital in Chesterfield, Mo. She has held these roles since January 2015. Ms. Candio is a past chairman of the American College of Healthcare Executives. She was the CEO of Inova Alexandria Hospital in Alexandria, Va., for nearly six years.

Mary Ellen Clyne, PhD, RN, is the CEO and president of Clara Maass Medical Center in Belleville, N.J. Dr. Clyne has held these roles since 2010. Dr. Clyne earned her master's of science in nursing administration and doctor of philosophy from Seton Hall University in Orange, N.J.

Karen Collins, RN, serves as CEO of Lady of the Sea General Hospital in Cut Off, La. At the hospital, Ms. Collins has had numerous roles including nurse manager. As CEO, she played a crucial role in helping Lady of the Sea General Hospital open a rural health medical clinic and two community pharmacies.

Vickie Diamond, RN, is the president and CEO of Wyoming Medical Center in Casper, a role she has held since February 2008. Ms. Diamond was the hospital's interim CEO, COO, CNO and senior vice president of patient care services. Until 2015, Ms. Diamond was on the American Hospital Association's board of trustees.

Amy Freeman, RN, is vice president of St. Louis-based Ascension Health and is president and CEO of Community Health. She was the president and CEO of Ascension's Providence Health System in Washington, D.C., from 2010 to 2015. Ms. Freeman started her nursing career at Ascension's Providence Health System nearly three decades ago.

Marian Furlong, RN, is the president and CEO of Hudson (Wis.) Hospital & Clinics. With more than 30 years of healthcare management experience, Ms. Furlong joined Hudson Hospital in 1999 as president and CEO. Ms. Furlong played a key role in the planning and construction of a new Hudson Hospital health campus and transitioned Hudson Hospital to become owned by Bloomington, Minn.-based HealthPartners. Before joining the hospital, she worked in health systems in Iowa, Minnesota and California.

Rachel Gonzales, RN, serves as CEO of Madison Memorial Hospital in Rexburg, Idaho. She became the hospital's CEO in April 2012. She earned her master's in nursing and doctorate of management from University of Phoenix.

Audrey Gregory, PhD, RN, MSN, serves as market CEO of Saint Francis Healthcare in Memphis, Tenn. Dr. Gregory earned her master's degrees in nursing and healthcare administration from Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah, Ga.

Nancy G. Hesse, MSN, RN, is the CEO of  Cancer Treatment Centers of America at Eastern Regional Medical Center in Philadelphia. She also serves as the hospital's interim president. She earned her master's in nursing leadership degree from University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and a bachelor of science in nursing from Widener University in Chester, Pa.

Fred Hunter, RN, is the CEO of Desert Valley Hospital in Victorville, Calif. Mr. Hunter was the administrator and chief nursing officer for Centinela Freeman Health System - Marina Campus from June 2006 to May 2007. He earned his nursing degree from California State University-Dominguez Hills.

In an interview with Becker's Hospital Review, Mr. Hunter said his nursing background largely shaped his leadership style, adding, "I think the most important thing is that it actually helped me be more process-oriented and outcomes driven, as well as understand that nothing can be achieved without a team. [This perspective] works well for the vision for a hospital as a whole."

Sally Hurt-Deitch, RN, has been the Market CEO of The Hospitals of Providence in El Paso, Texas, since April 2015. Ms. Hurt-Deitch earned her master's of science and nursing administration from The University of Texas at El Paso.

Jani L. Johnson, RN, was named the CEO of Saint Luke's Hospital of Kansas City in July 2015. In 1985, Ms. Johnson began her nursing career at Saint Luke's Health System as a staff nurse. Saint Luke's then promoted Ms. Johnson to leadership positions including vice president of the cardiovascular service line for Saint Luke's Health System and the Heart Institute in 2002. She earned her nursing degree from Omaha-based Methodist School of Nursing and a master's in nursing from University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Maureen Kahn, RN, MSN, is the CEO and president of Quincy, Ill.-based Blessing Hospital, a position she had held for nearly 11 years. In 2007, she earned her master's of nursing degree from University of Phoenix. As CEO, Ms. Kahn has helped the hospital become a Magnet Hospital for nursing excellence, as well as a national chest pain center, a primary stroke center and an Institute for Healthcare Improvement Mentor Hospital.

Kathleen Kinslow, CRNA, EdD, MBA, is the CEO and president of Philadelphia-based Aria Health. Equipped with more than 35 years of healthcare experience, she joined Aria Health in 2010 as president and CEO. She earned her master's in education and master's in business from St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, a master's degree in nursing from Temple University in Philadelphia and a doctorate in education from Widener University in Chester, Pa.

Catherine Landis, RN, is currently Brevard, N.C.-based Transylvania Regional Hospital's president and CEO. The hospital named Ms. Landis president and CNO in August 2014. She has 25 years of experience in heading patient services and cardiac programs at healthcare organizations across the southeastern United States. Ms. Landis previously was Mt. Pleasant, S.C.-based East Cooper Medical Center's CNO.

Helen Lidholm, RN, BSN, MBA, is the CEO and chairwoman of the board for Saint Mary's Regional Medical Center in Reno, Nev. Ms. Lidholm has served as CEO for nearly four years and was the center's COO from August 2007 to July 2012. Ms. Lidholm earned her bachelor of science in nursing at Malmo Municipal University in Sweden.

Mary Lou Mastro, MS, RN, has served as Elmhurst (Ill.) Memorial Healthcare's president and CEO for the last three years. Equipped with more than 35 years of healthcare leadership experience, she served as CEO of Linden Oaks at Edward a behavioral health hospital on Edward Hospital's Naperville campus. 

Leslie Marsh, RN, MSN, is CEO of Lexington (Neb.) Regional Health Center, a position she has held for more than six years. She has served on councils and boards, including the board of the Nebraska Rural Health Association. Ms. Marsh holds a master's degree in nursing from Yale University's Nursing Management, Policy and Leadership program.

Anne Meisner, RN, is the president and CEO of  Cancer Treatment Centers of America at Southeastern Regional Medical Center in Newnan, Ga. Ms. Meisner has been with CTCA for more than 20 years. She has served as an intensive care unit nurse and attended University of Wisconsin in Madison.

Sam Miller, RN, MSN, REMT-P, NHA, is the CEO of North Sunflower Medical Center in Ruleville, Miss. As CEO, Mr. Miller leads a staff of nearly 500 employees, physicians and family nurse practitioners. The hospital opened its Beacon Wellness Center in 2011, a 33,000-square-foot facility which features a surgical wing, administration offices, a sleep center and a workout facility.

Trish O'Keefe, PhD, RN, is the president of Morristown (N.J.) Medical Center. For four years, she was Morristown Medical Center's CEO and has held numerous roles at the hospital. Dr. O'Keefe started her career as a bedside nurse nearly 35 years ago and was named Morristown Medical Center's chief nursing officer in 1996. She is a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, New Jersey Organization of Nurse Executives and Sigma Theta Tau International.

Maureen Pode, RN, BSN, MA, is the CEO of  NYC Health + Hospitals/North Central Bronx in New York City, which went into effect Aug. 15, 2016. Ms. Pode has worked at NYC Health + Hospitals for the last 14 years. She has more than 30 years of experience in acute and ambulatory care.

Karen Price-Gharzeddine, RN, has been the CEO of San Gabriel (Calif.) Valley Medical Center and AHMC Health System for nearly a year. At SVMC, she has held numerous roles including COO and CNO. Ms. Price-Gharzeddine preciously was the vice president and chief nurse executive of ancillary services at St. John Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo, Calif. She is a member of Hospital Association Southern California, American College of Healthcare Executives, CEO Hospital Association Southern California Board and Association California Nurse Leaders.

Steven Rose, RN, MN, is the president and CEO of Nanticoke Health Services in Seaford, Del. As president and CEO, he led the hospital through a new health IT initiative, which included investing in a new electronic medical record and obtaining meaningful use level 2. American Hospital Association named Mr. Rose to its board of trustees in 2013 for a three-year term beginning in 2014. Mr. Rose is the first Delawarean ever named to AHA's board of trustees.

Maria Ryan, PhD, APRN, is the CEO of Cottage Hospital in Woodsville, N.H. A board certified family nurse practitioner, Dr. Ryan specializes in emergency medicine. In November 2006, Dr. Ryan joined the hospital as CNO and COO and became CEO nearly four years later in February 2010. While she was CEO, Cottage Hospital became the first critical access hospital in New Hampshire to achieve CMS Stage 1 meaningful use certification for its electronic health records in July 2011.

Cherie Sibley, BSN, FACHE, is the CEO of Clark Regional Medical Center in Winchester, Ky., a role she has held for nearly three years. Prior to joining Clark Regional, Ms. Sibley was the COO of Danville (Va.) Regional Medical Center. She earned her bachelor's of science in nursing from University of North Alabama in Florence.

Cheryl Wolfe, RN, MSN, NEA-BC, serves as the president and CEO of Salem (Ore.) Health. She joined Salem Health in 2007 as their senior vice president of operations/chief nursing officer. She became COO in 2010 and assumed her role as CEO in 2015.

Debra Wright, MS, RN, serves as CEO of Howard Memorial Hospital in Nashville, Ark. Ms. Wright became CEO of Howard Memorial Hospital, a 20-bed critical access hospital, in November 2009. Under her leadership, iVantage Health Analytic name the hospital as one of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in the United States in 2013.

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