The St. John’s Medical Center Board of Trustees’ search for a replacement for Liz Masek has begun, and four applicants put their names in the hat.
Applications for Masek’s seat closed Tuesday. Each applicant submitted a resume with professional experience and previous board appointments, and a letter describing why they want to sit on the board and what they will offer St. John’s. The board will interview the four Tuesday morning before its monthly meeting. The public is welcome to attend.
Chairwoman Cynthia Hogan said the board’s plan was to choose Masek’s replacement at the Tuesday meeting, set for 4 p.m. That would give the new trustee time to attend board meetings and learn the ropes before Masek leaves at the end of the year.
The News&Guide spoke with the applicants to ask why they wanted to join the board.
Critzer: An advisor
An advisor to the St. John’s board for the past year and a half, Sue Critzer is a former medical device industry executive. She joined the St. John’s Auxiliary as a volunteer in 2007 and moved up to run its charity golf tournament and become its president for four years.
In her work as a consultant and executive she gained experience with the ISO 9001 certification, an international quality assessment St. John’s is working toward. Critzer said her medical industry background would benefit the hospital.
“When you’re looking at membership on any board, you want to look at a complementary mix of skills and experience,” she said. “I want to continue making the hospital as vibrant as possible.”
Rosenberg: Former nurse
Vicki Rosenberg brings a different type of medical experience than Critzer. A longtime nurse, she worked at St. John’s for four years and contracts with the Teton County Health Department. Her on-the-ground experience working with Teton County patients, she said, has given her an understanding of and appreciation for the hospital’s work.
“I know firsthand that customer satisfaction and wellness are of paramount consideration,” she said, “not only for the patients who come here but also the employees who work here.”
In her application Rosenberg cited the hospital’s impending name change as a critical motivator.
“I’m particularly interested in being part of the ongoing evolution from St. John’s Medical Center to St. John’s Health,” she wrote, “with its focused emphasis on helping individuals reach their optimal wellness.”
Halper: Former radiologist
Bob Halper has nearly four decades in the medical field. He was a radiologist, and he holds a Master of Business Administration in health care and has served in administrative positions in hospitals. His subspecialties included neuroradiology and nuclear medicine.
Other than currently sitting on the foundation board, he has no other board experience, but he said his time as president of the Atlanta Radiologic Society and work leading other professional organizations was akin to the high-level planning and strategy work that would be required of him as a hospital trustee.
He believes his breadth of experience makes him an ideal fit.
“I have an understanding of health care at all levels,” he said. “I’m hopeful that my sorts of assets are something that would be a valuable addition.”
Coles: Customer focused
Michael Coles is the only applicant without medical industry experience, but he isn’t worried about that.
“I have made a business career that was about customer experience,” he said. “Businesspeople focus on patients and make sure they are getting the kind of care they need.”
Coles co-founded The Great American Cookie Company in 1977 and grew it to a chain of several hundred stores by the time he sold it in 1998. He has also led other consumer product companies and worked in government in Georgia, where he spent his career, heading the state’s Film, Video and Music Advisory Board. He also ran for the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate as a Democrat from Georgia.
“Being on the board you need the ability to see both sides of an issue and make sure everyone’s gotten what they needed,” he said. “That’s a talent I have.”