CHS gives COO major vote of confidence

Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems recently approved raises for several executives, and the company's board appears to have someone in mind to succeed chairman and CEO Wayne T. Smith if he should decide to step away, according to the Nashville Post.

CHS President and COO Tim Hingtgen received the largest raise for 2020. His base salary will be $1 million this year, up from $935,000 in 2019 and $900,000 in 2018. Mr. Hingtgen, who has been in his role since 2016, also received an award of 200,000 non-qualified stock options.

The stock award is meant to serve as an incentive for Mr. Hingtgen to stay with the company for the long term.

"This award is intended to support the company's strategic succession planning process and further align Mr. Hingtgen's overall compensation with increases in stockholder value," states a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. 

Mr. Smith is the only person who has ever served as CEO of CHS, and he hasn't signaled interest in stepping away from the company. However, it appears Mr. Smith and the board have confidence in Mr. Hingtgen to lead the company, according to the Nashville Post.

"The board of directors and company value Tim Hingtgen's leadership as CHS continues to make steady progress toward the organization's long-term goals," CHS said in a statement to the Nashville Post. "This special one-time grant of stock options further aligns Mr. Hingtgen's incentive compensation with our growth and value initiatives and is also designed to incentivize a long-lasting leadership role with the company."

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