Woman’s Hospital leadership transition continues; chief strategy officer eliminated

    As part of its ongoing leadership transition, Woman’s Hospital is eliminating the chief strategy officer position held by Stan Shelton, who has been let go, with the role being absorbed by another top executive.

    The change is part of a streamlining effort, says Woman’s Hospital interim CEO Robert Burgess, to focus the organization on its mission—the health care of women and infants.

    “Our plan is designed for us to get stronger and make necessary changes in the current environment,” Burgess says. “Health care has changed pretty considerably. We’re making changes to make a positive impact.”

    Shelton had been with Woman’s for 30 years and led planning and development efforts for the hospital since 2007, including the campus relocation in 2012, negotiations involving the BASIS charter school on Woman’s campus and the Materra mixed-use development currently underway. 

    Going forward, strategy initiatives will now be managed by the hospital CEO, COO and the vice president leadership group, Burgess says, while development projects—like Materra—will be handled with the help of outside experts in real estate. 

    “While we are experts in health care, we’re not experts in real estate,” Burgess says. “So we’ll turn to professionals to help us manage that.” 

    The news comes as Woman’s Hospital is in the process of selecting a new CEO to succeed Teri Fontenot, as well as filling three other recently vacated positions—chief financial officer, chief nursing officer and chief philanthropy officer.

    Woman’s expects to have a new CEO in place by September, Burgess says.  

    The hospital filled the chief nursing position with Cheri Johnson in May and has plans to soon fill the chief philanthropy role, in addition to adding a new executive position—vice president of surgical services. 

    “Our surgical environment is growing,” he says. “We need someone to help align those resources.” 

    As for the CFO vacancy, the role is currently being managed by COO Stephanie Anderson and her staff while the hospital works to identify a replacement. 

    Meanwhile, Woman’s Vice President of Ancillary Services Kurt Scott is being promoted to senior vice president of clinical operations and ancillary services.

    “We’re looking at where we need resources,” Burgess says. “Stan’s position was eliminated but absorbed by other leadership positions. We’re streamlining to focus on our mission and our best way to move forward.”

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