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InCharge Arkansas Medical News

HEALTH CARE 2021

David Hunton, MD

Scott Street, CEO

Sam Lynd, CEO

Bubba Arnold, President

President, Mercy Clinic Fort Smith

Medical Center of South Arkansas El Dorado

NEA Baptist Hospital Jonesboro

CHI St. Vincent Morrilton

Your 2021 Directory of Healthcare Leaders in Arkansas


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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Arkansas Medical News

InCharge

HEALTH CARE 2021

Publisher’s Letter Greetings Arkansas Medical News Readers! We are pleased to bring you the 2021 edition of InCharge magazine – our signature directory of healthcare executives in Arkansas. As always, we have new faces to show you, familiar faces to show you, and faces you will want to reach out and connect with. Behind each of those faces are heroes who champion other heroes to keep healthcare running in Arkansas.

Publisher Pamela Z. Haskins Editor Pepper Jeter Executive Assistant Shelley Tinnon Creative Director Susan Graham Graphic Designer Katy Barrett-Alley Arkansas Medical News is now privately and locally owned by Ziggy Productions, LLC. P O Box 1842 Memphis, TN 38101- 1842 President: Pamela Harris Vice President: Patrick Rains

www.ArkansasMedicalNews.com @ArkMedNews

InCharge Arkansas Medical News

HEALTH CARE 2021

Our goal this year when selecting our cover honorees was to choose deserving leaders who could not only represent their worthy organizations, but also the regions in which they are located. I went first to Northwest Arkansas, where Dr. David Hunton had been nominated for one of our spots. Dr. Hunton is a long-time physician/surgeon with Mercy and was formerly the chief medical officer of the Mercy Fort Smith hospital. He now oversees the primary care clinics, along with a host of specialty clinics in and around Fort Smith. On a side note, Dr. Hunton, who hails from Benton, Arkansas, is a musician, as was his mother. He enjoys playing jazz piano in a band that serves up popular 60s & 70s music. When asked who he really loves to listen to, Hunton pointed me to famous jazz pianist, Beegie Adair. Ahh yes – very nice. Looking to South Arkansas instantly brought to mind, Scott Street, CEO of the Medical Center of South Arkansas. Scott has been leading MCSA through much growth, including a multi-million-dollar renovation and expansion. He has partnered with Arkansas Children’s and Arkansas Heart Hospital to bring specialty care to the region. Recently, he has served on Governor Hutchison’s Covid-19 Task Force. But what you may not know about Scott is that he likes the freedom of space and open-air which years ago, prompted him to get his pilot’s license and eventually led to literally taking another leap… into skydiving! As many of you may know, in addition to Arkansas Medical News, I am also the publisher of Memphis Medical News and West Tennessee Medical News. It was through my work on those two publications that I kept up with Sam Lynd, who was working his way through the ranks of Baptist Memorial Healthcare Corporation based in Memphis. In 2014, we spotlighted Sam when he had just taken the reins of Baptist Memorial Hospital in Tipton County, Tennessee. He has been a steady leader, and just over a year ago, he became CEO of NEA Baptist Hospital in Jonesboro, Arkansas. And dear readers, congratulations are in order because in addition to running a new hospital during a global pandemic, Sam just got married in March! Congratulations to Sam and his bride, Chaney, and welcome to Arkansas!” Last but not least, we chose Bubba Arnold, president of CHI St. Vincent in Morrilton to represent north central Arkansas. Bubba is a pharmacist by trade who has been with CHI St. Vincent for 30 years. He became president of the Morrilton hospital in 2012. Bubba is a pleasure to talk with and lays claim to fame that he has been known to fill prescriptions for famous astronauts who happen to be passing through Arkansas – not just any astronaut – the first American to orbit Earth in 1962. That’s right – Bubba filled a prescription for Astronaut John Glenn.

David Hunton, MD

Scott Street, CEO

Sam Lynd, CEO

Bubba Arnold, President

President, Mercy Clinic Fort Smith

Medical Center of South Arkansas El Dorado

NEA Baptist Hospital Jonesboro

CHI St. Vincent Morrilton

Your 2021 Directory of Healthcare Leaders in Arkansas

ON THE COVER

David Hunton, MD, Scott Street, Sam Lynd, Bubba Arnold Cover photos by Mark Mathews

This edition of AMN InCharge was proudly printed in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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This was a delightful group of guys to visit with. And it was so exciting that we were able to get them all to Little Rock to photograph them together on the same day. They are great leaders of healthcare in Arkansas. I know you will enjoy reading more about them in the Q & A cover story beginning on the next page. One note – we put “Post Covid Perspectives” in the title of that story because as you’ll see, all four leaders from north, south, east and central Arkansas reported a steady decline in Covid cases and hospitalizations. And while it’s not quite time to take our eye off the ball, that gives us hope moving forward. I hope you find this directory useful. If you have ideas or nominations for people to include in next year’s InCharge, please shoot me a note or give me a call. I look forward to hearing from you.

Pamela Z. Haskins

Owner, Publisher Arkansas Medical News pamela@arkansasmedicalnews.com 501.247.9189

Arkansas Medical News 3


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021

Dr. David Hunton, Scott Street, Sam Lynd, and Bubba Arnold enjoy their first time meeting in Little Rock

Arkansas Healthcare Update and Post COVID Perspectives Leaders from Four Different Regions of Arkansas Weigh in on Leading the State Through a Healthcare Crisis…and more! As Arkansans begin to see the light at the end of the COVID tunnel, we spoke with leaders from four different regions of the state to get an update on their organizations and the regions they serve. Reporting from Northwest Arkansas is Dr. David Hunton, President of the Mercy Clinic in Fort Smith, Sam Lynd, CEO of NEA Baptist weighs in from Northeast Arkansas, Bubba Arnold, CEO of CHI St. Vincent in Morrilton represents North Central Arkansas and Scott Street, CEO of the Medical Center of South Arkansas reports from that

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region. Arkansas Medical News talked to them about how they began, who influenced them, the tumultuous past year, and asked what kind of advice they would give someone beginning a career in healthcare administration. Enjoy. Where did you grow up and when and how did you decide to pursue a career in healthcare? Arnold: I lived in McGehee, Arkansas through junior high. While in 7th grade, my Dad began losing his eyesight to glaucoma, so at the age of 45 my Mom decided to attend nursing school at UAM. After receiving her RN license, Mom accepted a charge nurse position with the VA at Fort Roots, so we moved

to Cabot, Ark., where I graduated high school. She worked on the night shift and came home most mornings tired but happy. I knew she had a very difficult job and at some point, I asked her what she liked about her work. She said many of these veterans have had traumatic experiences that we cannot even imagine, and she wanted to do what she could to help them. I felt the compassion in her heart, and it struck a chord with me. After high school, I completed prerequisites for pharmacy school, then attended UAMS College of Pharmacy where I received my degree in 1983. Hunton: I grew up in Benton, Arkansas. My dad was a chemical engineer, and my mother was a music major and grade-school


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 teacher. I had planned a career in the military, with, in all likelihood, an engineering degree. I had also been recruited to play college football at the Air Force Academy. Before I was due to report that first summer, however, I felt that this was not going to work out. I don’t know exactly why or how this feeling came about. My parents were not happy with me, and I ended up at the University of Arkansas. My family physician had been a mentor for me along with my dentist. They encouraged me to take a pre-medical tract and to work at the hospital as an orderly that next summer. I did so and never looked back; I knew I loved the hospital, sick patients and the opportunity to make a difference in their lives. Lynd: I grew up in the Memphis area where my first job during high school was in commercial construction. I was part of a demolitions and cleanup crew for the summer but had the opportunity to replace a friend leaving behind a pharmacy tech job upon heading to college. Since air conditioning sounded pretty good at that point, I jumped at the opportunity. I was instantly hooked. I loved working with patients, providers, and payers trying to find the most cost-effective options for treatment. I was the nerd that would spend time reading medication package inserts during downtime so I could have a better understanding of what we were providing our patients. But most importantly, I was part of a great team with some great mentors who still keep up with each other to this day. I was hooked on healthcare from this moment on. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but it had to be part of a strong arkansasmedicalnews.com

team with a strong mission. I learned quickly that not every team was as strong as this first experience, but also that building that team was something I was passionate about and a critical part of any mission in health care. Street: I am native of Arkansas from Cherokee Village, a quaint little town in the northeastern part of the state. Because of this, I have always had a calling to serve in rural areas; especially in Arkansas. I knew in the eighth grade that I wanted my career path to lead me to becoming a hospital CEO. It always helps to have good examples to learn from. My uncle was a CEO of a hospital, and my dad was a businessman that I respected a great deal. For me, those two career paths merged. I liked the business side of healthcare and being able to help communities and individuals receive access to quality healthcare.

Bubba Arnold

Did you have a special mentor or mentors you’d like to mention? Arnold: I’ve been very blessed to have had several mentors in my life, but the one that stands out the most is Merle Lewis. Mr. Lewis is a successful architect and the father of a dear high school friend, David. He was very involved with our group of boys growing up so I watched how he interacted with us and others. His heart for giving both time and resources along with his leadership style made a great impression on me. Hunton: Yes, my family physician and my dentist were instrumental in guiding me toward a medical career. Lynd: There are so many generous people that have guided me over the years, I cannot even begin to start naming names. The most special mentors are those that have been leaders at every level in the organizations I have been privileged to be a part of – CEOs, CNOs, department leaders, et cetera. They are the ones who have taught me the ropes, shaped my perspectives, and made me look much smarter than I am over my 10 years at Baptist. My Aunt Debbie was a game changer, too. She is a long-time nurse who pushed me toward thinking about health care administration and using my experiences and leadership skills to improve care delivery through complex teams and systems. That obviously changed my whole world. I also had a special mentor that once told me I would never be a CEO in this business so I can’t think about this question without remembering the fire that got me to push harder, learn more, and develop skills that would allow me to be an effective contributor at Arkansas Medical News 5


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 the highest level. Maybe they knew exactly what they were doing when they made that statement. Street: The most important mentor I have had in my life was my mother. Through her support and guidance, my mother instilled a sense of drive and determination in me. As a tenacious woman with grit, when things got tough, she would coach me through using a mix of motherly love and tough love. To this day, when I meet a challenge or obstacle, I look back to those lessons she taught me to guide me through. How would you describe your style of leadership? Arnold: I strive to be a servant leader. I realized early on that teamwork is essential for our success and my role as leader is to make sure that we have the right players on the team, the team has the tools needed to do their job and I do all I can to make the team’s work easier. Hunton: I would say that I lead by example and that I try not to micromanage. That has not always been easy given my background in surgery. Lynd: I aspire to be a “coach” more than anything else; someone who works toward building the collaborative teams I mentioned. As a leader, I try to hold myself to some very simple principles, that are not always easy to execute. Respect, humility, empathy, generosity, and vulnerability. You have to give of yourself in order to build trust. I call that emotional labor. Building relationships is everything, but you can’t do it without the hard work of emotional labor. Be generous, expose talent and creativity, be patient in 6 Arkansas Medical News

David Hunton developing a vision and then do something about it – primarily letting people off the hook, better known as empowering them to take action. Street: I would describe my style of leadership as being a coach. Due to my athletic background of previously being a college football player at Ouachita Baptist University, I use many analogies that transfer from the field to leading a team. My primary focus is always bringing out the best in my team by giving them the resources and guidance they need to tackle goals and obstacles. What is your organization experiencing now in terms of COVID cases & patients? Have you seen a decline in cases and/ or deaths? Arnold: COVID activity in Morrilton and surrounding communities has dropped dramatically and appears to be

holding. Hopefully this trend will continue, however, we are concerned that the drop in vaccination rates may reverse this course. Hunton: We have seen a marked decline in both the number of cases in the hospital and the number of sick patients we are testing. The second week in January was the apex for us, and we were very close to having to open the GI center as an additional ICU and to mobilize the ambulatory staff to hospital-based roles. Lynd: We have certainly seen a decline in COVID patients and deaths over the last few months. We have a steady case count today, but it is a fraction of what it was just a couple of months ago. We’re watching closely for the emergence of variants and remain diligent in the precautions to prevent continued spread, and are encouraging people to take advantage of the availability of vaccines. Many other countries are clamoring to get more, and today, we have plenty available at our walk-in clinic, and invite those interested in having an on-site vaccination event at their business or church to reach out and let us help. Street: In the past few weeks, we have seen a dramatic decline in COVID-19 cases. As vaccine rates increase, I hope that we will continue to see a decline. We remain diligently prepared to care for any COVID-19 positive patients and serve our community.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Does it feel like your organization is getting close to being back to normal? Has the COVID stress level subsided at all? Arnold: Our volumes took a major hit in April 2020, declining approximately 80 percent. Volumes began returning in the summer of 2020 and are now running at 85-90 percent of preCOVID levels. The COVID stress level is down due to the decline in activity and the fact that we have adjusted to this environment. Hutton: I would say yes to both. We have been able to resume all surgeries for the most part having had to defer elective cases requiring an ICU stay for all of January and part of February. Our ICU, which had gotten up to about 50 percent with COVID patients, remains full, but with conventional problems, trauma, heart issues, sepsis, etc. Lynd: Some COVID stress has subsided, but our team is still working hard to ensure people are able to avoid the emerging variants and limit continued spread. Our team has worked so hard over the last year there is definitely some weariness and burnout, but I couldn’t be prouder of the way they have stepped up to care for the Northeast region of our state. We are fortunate that compared to many others, we’ve weathered this storm pretty well. We had no layoffs, a steady supply of PPE, continued to hire and recruit, and struck a balance between caring for people in the present, but also looking to the future and ensuring we were ready to care for whatever needs our communities might identify in the near or distant future.

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Street: I could go on and on praising our frontline workers who have stepped up to care for our patients and community when they needed us the most. I attribute their determination to help others to an organization wide vision of compassionate care. I would like to challenge everyone to look toward the future and the new normal for life post COVID-19. We are not yet past the danger but instead are now seeing a glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel. What is the next biggest challenge your organization is facing in 2021? Arnold: Financial viability is a major challenge due lower volumes and higher expenses for all hospitals now. The nursing shortage has a significant impact. We are using agency nursing staff for the first time in my nine-year career at CHI St. Vincent Morrilton

Sam Lynd

to supplement our core staffing. We also expect significant supply cost inflation to begin impacting operations as we move forward. Hunton: Dealing with physician and co-worker engagement and burnout, for one. Everyone is tired from having dealt with both COVID and a reduction in force. A second issue would be reducing the spend on travelers and temp staff in order to get our labor costs back to where they were. We were concerned that patients would be reluctant to come back to the hospital and to a lesser extent the clinic. That issue, however, continues to get better. We remain concerned about those patients with undiagnosed illnesses who put off being seen during the worst of COVID. Lynd: One of the biggest challenges I foresee is unpacking all we have learned during the pandemic, the good and the bad, identifying each constraint and deciding how to turn them into opportunities. Our management system is designed such that we are able to do this when we are deliberate and intentional about the process of ideation, developing hypotheses, and validating with data and stakeholder input. There is a major opportunity to build on all we accomplished in the last year and accelerating forward delivering on our vision for building the optimal patient experience through truly integrated care delivery. Street: We have experienced many challenges, triumphs, and changes over the past year and look forward to continued progress in the future. Our biggest challenge over the next Arkansas Medical News 7


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 dollar construction project for an 18-bed behavioral health unit. The 6-8-month project will include the build out of 10,000 sq. ft. of space located on the second floor south wing of the hospital. Our goals continue to be centered on expanding patient healthcare access and increasing quality of care.

year is continuing to move forward from the COVID-19 pandemic. During the pandemic, many people cancelled preventive health screenings, annual wellness visits and routine surgeries. Reeducating our community to get back to prioritizing their health remains a priority. What are your organizations short and/ or long-term goals? Arnold: Our shortterm goals are responding to the challenges mentioned above, working to improve volumes and recruiting nurses. We are also renovating the exterior of our hospital with a big thank you to our wonderful CHI St. Vincent Morrilton Auxiliary for raising the funds necessary for this work! Our long-term goals include continuing to provide quality patient care and being a conduit to centers of excellence across the CHI St. Vincent ministry for our community. Hunton: I think we have made several changes for the better. The COVID pandemic accelerated our use of technology, video visits and other aspects to become more patientcentric. We have used the past year to be innovative in how we “see” patients and how they are scheduled, treated and followed. We will be concentrating on quality metrics more so than on how many patient visits we can do. We have become more patient centric than we were formerly. Lynd: Our goal is to always be improving health care for our patients. We believe we are on track to deliver a better care

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Scott Street delivery system for the next era of health care. Our focus is on driving the patient experience and service model in a radically different and improved way through our integrated system. Our management systems support communication, collaboration, and constant improvement that will deliver on this vision and blaze a new trail for the outcomes and experiences our patients, employers, payers, and providers all dream of. Street: Medical Center of South Arkansas is on the precipice of making progress on goals that we have had for several years. We are in the process of completing a 2.6-million-dollar renovation of our intensive care unit that is projected to be completed in two months. After this renovation is completed, construction crews will turn their focus to a 2.75-million-

If you could give one piece of advice to someone thinking about going into healthcare administration, what would it be? Arnold: The work is not easy, but I cannot think of a more rewarding career. Where else can you work and see how your efforts improve the lives of others? I want to add, there’s a lot to learn when beginning a career in healthcare so you’ll have many questions along the way. When you get to a point where you must make a decision and are unsure, do what’s best for the patient. It’s always the right way to go. Hunton: I have learned much from the different roles that I have had. I started out in patient care as an orderly, at the bottom of the pyramid. I have always had a soft spot for the nursing team as a result of this. I certainly learned a lot about decision-making and a bias toward action as a general surgeon for 30-plus years. When I transitioned from a full-time physician to an administrator, I had to learn about the business end of health care and had to become more of a team player. That said, my advice would be to learn as much about all the aspects of health care that you can, and that you never forget


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 your roots or humility if you are fortunate enough to get into a leadership role. Compassion, communication, honesty and humility are to me the keys to success. Lynd: Raise your hand and volunteer for everything. Collect experiences. Observe and evaluate leaders (even me), and keep notes on what resonates with you, and what doesn’t, as you shape your leadership style preparing for the day your name gets called. Don’t hesitate to ask people for 20 minutes of their time to ask them a few questions and learn from their perspective. Spend time exploring various segments of our industry, including digital health, and gain an understanding of the problems people are trying to solve and offer to help. Be generous with your time, be vulnerable and honest about what you do and don’t know and understand that we are all here to make an impact on people’s lives. Street: One piece of advice I would give someone thinking about going into healthcare administration would be to practice perseverance. Overcoming challenges and reaching goals all require perseverance. Choosing perseverance is often the difference between success and failure. As you navigate through the world of impossibilities and challenges, learn from your struggles and turn what seems impossible into possible through perseverance. Is there anything else on your mind that you’d like to share with your peers across Arkansas? Arnold: As we all know, teamwork is the key to success, so I want to share my favorite ‘teamwork’ quote. “Teamwork occurs when

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people are united in action and in passion for a common cause. Their shared goal is so strong that it removes hostilities, puts away disagreements and gives previously divided people a reason to take their place alongside each other. When this occurs, different gifts, talents and anointing’s become connected together, and the result is an amazing river of divine power that achieves the supernatural and accomplishes the impossible.” (Renner) Hunton: Like others I have talked with, we have all been impressed with the improved collaboration and teamwork with both our competitors, and especially with courage and tirelessness of our co-workers. Lynd: Given the talent and passion in this state, I’d end by saying competition is good, but true collaboration is better. When we collectively decide the path to

a new era of healthcare innovation is through creative partnerships and alignment, we can outpace all other states in delivering the care and service for which our patients are desperate. Street: The last year has been a challenge and has reminded many healthcare professionals of why we got into the healthcare field in the first place. Delivering medical care in the midst of a global pandemic has required teamwork at the highest level. Life has been disrupted by lockdowns and subsequent restrictions but chronic diseases and medical crises have remained. While there have been many challenges, our healthcare community has stood strong through one of the worst medical crises in decades. Thank you to all MCSA team members and healthcare professionals across the state for their unwavering commitment to patient care.

MEET BRANDON: FATHER, COMMUNITY LEADER, DYNAMIC PRACTITIONER

“I think that everybody has two choices in life: either to go forward or to stop, and I just don’t like stopping.” read more about brandon whitfield and how his life changed after frank snell invited him to take a walk with him at snellarkansas.com

RESTORING MOBILITY AND INDEPENDENCE SINCE 1911

Little Rock n Bryant n Conway n Fayetteville n Fort Smith n 800-342-5541 Hot Springs n Mountain Home n North Little Rock n Pine Bluff n Russellville

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021

A Chad Aduddell Chief Executive Officer CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, AR 72205 501-552-3000

www.chistvincent.com

Aduddell became chief executive officer at CHI St. Vincent in 2015. For three previous years, Aduddell served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of CHI St. Vincent and president of CHI St. Vincent Infirmary in Little Rock. He came to CHI St. Vincent from¯ St. Anthony Hospital in Oklahoma City, OK, in 2012. At St. Anthony, Aduddell served as the president of the Bone & Joint Hospital and as chair and administrator of the Saints Heart and Vascular Institute. Aduddell has a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Tulsa and an MBA in health care administration from Oklahoma City University’s Meinders School of Business. He is a member of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Arkansas Healthcare Transparency Initiative Board, Fifty for the Future, Healthy Active Arkansas Board of Directors and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock College of Business Health and Human Services Advisory Board.

Jennifer Anderson, MD, PharmD Acting Chief of Staff  Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks   1100 N. College Ave  Fayetteville, AR 72703  479-443-4301   www.fayettevillear. va.gov  

Dr. Anderson has 12 years of progressive leadership experience at Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System in Little Rock. She currently serves as the Associate Chief of Staff for Quality, Safety and Value, where she is responsible for quality and accreditation, risk management, patient safety, data analytics and informatics, VERA, clinical applications coordination and decision support services, and is the HRO champion for the facility. Prior to this role, Dr. Anderson served as the Deputy Chief of Staff in Little Rock. In this role, she oversaw outpatient operations and provided direct supervision to Clinic Practice Management, Primary Care, Home Based Primary Care, and Pharmacy

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programs. Dr. Anderson began her career with the VA in 2009 as a staff ophthalmologist.  She later became the Section Chief of Ophthalmology, Assistant Chief of Surgery and Chief of Surgery.  Dr. Anderson obtained a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and a Doctor of Medicine degree from Eastern Virginia Medical School. Her ophthalmology residency was completed at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.   She is a board-certified ophthalmologist with experience in academic, private practice, and utilization reviews within various VA settings, and is also recognized as a certified Improvement advisor.

Kim Arnold Chief Nursing Officer Northwest Medical Center – Bentonville 3000 Medical Center Parkway Bentonville, AR 72712 479-553-1000 www.northwest health.com

Arnold moved to Northwest Arkansas from Woodward, OK, in 2017. With more than 20 years of experience, she was with AllianceHealth Woodward in Woodward, OK, where she served in many leadership roles, including Chief Quality Officer and then Chief Nursing Officer. She earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing from University of Oklahoma and a master’s degree in business administration with a focus on health care management from Southern Nazarene University. She is a member of the Arkansas Nurses Association and the American Nurses Association. Locally, she serves with the NWA American Heart Association.

Leslie “Bubba” Arnold President CHI St. Vincent Morrilton 4 Hospital Dr. Morrilton, AR 72110 501-977-2300

www.chistvincent.com

Arnold became president of CHI St. Vincent Morrilton in 2012 after more than 30 years of progressively responsible experience at CHI St. Vincent. He has served as vice president of operations, administrative director of operations, director of pharmacy services and staff pharmacist. He earned a Master of Arts in health services management at Webster University and a Doctor of Pharmacy at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS). At

UAMS, he received the Faculty Gold Key in recognition of graduating at the top of his class. Arnold is chairman for the Morrilton Chamber of Commerce, serves on the board for the Conway County Economic Development Corporation and is a member of the Little Rock Executive Association, Leadership Greater Little Rock, the Arkansas Pharmacists Association and the Morrilton Core Connection Committee.

Marcia Atkinson President CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, AR 72205 501-552-3000

www.chistvincent.com

Atkinson has served as president of the CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute since January 2019, leading the practice she has worked at for more than 20 years. Her role with the Heart Institute includes oversight of hospital-based inpatient and outpatient services across the CHI St. Vincent hospitals as well as a network of 30 heart clinic locations across the Arkansas. She holds a master’s degree in Health Services Administration from the University of Arkansas Little Rock and a bachelor’s degree in nutrition from the University of Central Arkansas.

B Scott Bailey Chief Operations Officer Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 1808 West Main Street Russellville, Arkansas 72801 479-964-2841

saintmarysregional. com

Bailey has served as the COO at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center for the last three years. Prior to joining St. Mary’s, he was the chief financial officer in Muskogee, Oklahoma over two campuses with Regional Care, Capella Health. Bailey has served as CFO over a diverse inventory of hospitals for the past 30 years, from Mat Su Regional Medical Center in Palmer, Alaska, to a Regional CFO position with Health South. His experience ranges from starting up the Arizona Heart Hospital in Phoenix to building the Rehab Institute of Tucson. Bailey is dedicated to the community as a strong supporter of the Russellville Child Advocacy Center, the Russellville Chamber


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 of Commerce, Key Club, Rotary Club, United Way and the New Life Church.

John Ballard, PhD, FACHE new photo Chief Executive Officer Forrest City Medical Center 1601 Newcastle Road Forrest City, AR 72335 870-261-0000 www.forrestcity medicalcenter.com

Ballard joined Forrest City Medical Center in May of 2019. He previously served as CEO of Kentucky River Medical Center and brings with him 15 years of rural healthcare experience. Ballard earned his PhD of Public Health, Epidemiology from Walden University, his Master of Business Administration in finance from Alcorn State University, and his Bachelor of Science in computer science from Louisiana State University. 

Chris B. Barber President and Chief Executive Officer St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro AR 72401 870-207-4429 cbarber@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Barber, who has served in various capacities at St. Bernards for over 29 years, was named President and Chief Executive Officer of St. Bernards Healthcare in 2010. He has oversight of all St. Bernards-associated entities. Board certified in health care management, he holds fellow status in the American College of Healthcare Executives and serves as chairman of the board for the Arkansas Hospital Association.

Curtis Barnett President, Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 601 South Gaines Little Rock, AR 72201 501-378-2000

arkansasbluecross.com

As president and CEO, Barnett serves on the board of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, where he leads as chairman

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of the Association’s Board of Managers for the Federal Employee Program and as chairman of the Board of Managers for Blue Health Intelligence, a healthcare data analytics and solutions company. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the National Institute of Healthcare Management. Prior to his election as president and CEO in 2017, Barnett served as senior vice president of Internal Operations for Arkansas Blue Cross and as president and CEO of its wholly owned subsidiary company, USAble Corporation. A native of Sherwood, Arkansas, Barnett received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Arkansas, a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Arkansas, and a graduate of the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management’s Advanced Executive Program.

Shawn Barnett Chief Operating Officer and President Infirmary & North CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, 72205 501-552-3000 chistvincent.com

Barnett serves as chief operating officer for the CHI St. Vincent system and president for the Infirmary and CHI St. Vincent North hospitals. He came to CHI St. Vincent in 2018 from Lufkin, Texas, where he was president and chief operating officer of CHI St. Luke’s HealthMemorial. Before that, he served as regional CFO for two other Texas health systems. A Jonesboro native, he was controller for Methodist Hospital in Jonesboro from 1988 to 1995 and was CFO of the same from 1995 to 1999. He also served as CFO at two other hospitals. Barnett has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Arkansas State University, and an MBA from Regis University. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce and as an ex-officio member of the North Little Rock Chamber of Commerce.

Frederick (Rick) E. Barr, MD, Executive Vice President and Chief Clinical and Academic Officer Arkansas Children’s, Inc. 1 Children’s Way Little Rock, AR 72202 501-364-1100 BarrFE@ archildrens.org

In addition to serving as chief clinical and academic officer, Dr. Barr also holds the Jonathan R. Bates, MD Endowed Chair for Improving Child Health, elevating physician leadership and bridging operational, clinical and academic pursuits across the organization. He previously served as chair of the Department of Pediatrics and associate dean for child health in the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) College of Medicine, as well as pediatrician in chief for Arkansas Children’s and interim president of the Arkansas Children’s Research Institute. Dr. Barr also co-directed the formation of the child health practice collaborative to oversee and guide activity at and between Arkansas Children’s and UAMS including physician operations, clinic operations, research, education and finance subcommittees.

Levi Bauer Chief Executive Officer OrthoArkansas 800 Fair Park Blvd Little Rock, AR 72204 501-500-3500 orthoarkansas.com

Bauer has served as CEO of OrthoArkansas, the largest orthopedic practice in Arkansas, since June 2019. OrthoArkansas is comprised of 33 physicians, 13 physician extenders and 400 employees in 10 clinics across the state. For over 10 years, Bauer has been a noteworthy leader in the healthcare space.  He is driven by a desire to use his business skills to enhance the lives of others. He takes pride in leading initiatives that increase customer satisfaction, improve the customer experience, increase revenue, decrease expenses, and enhance employee satisfaction. He has a unique ability to be able to focus everyone on the most important thing to get done and then ensure those initiatives are executed flawlessly.  Bauer holds degrees in economics and a master’s in business administration.

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Ben Barylske Vice President and Chief Financial Officer St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro AR 72401 870-207-4565 bbarylske@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Barylske is charged with accounting, financial planning, budgeting and MIS for St. Bernards Healthcare as well as all purchasing, accounts payable, billing and collections for St. Bernards Medical Center.

Brent Beaulieu Chief Financial Officer Baptist Health 9601 Baptist Health Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-202-2000 baptist-health.com

Beaulieu, who has spent 21 years in health care, became chief financial officer of Baptist Health in January 2019. He joined Baptist Health in 2007 as assistant vice president of finance and was promoted to vice president of finance in 2008. He received a degree in accounting from Harding University in Searcy.

Alicia Berkemeyer Executive Vice President, Chief Health Management Officer Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 601 South Gaines Little Rock, AR 72201 501-378-2000 arkansasbluecross. com

Berkemeyer is responsible for all programs related to provider networks, value-based programs, primary care and commercial pharmacy for Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield and its affiliates. Berkemeyer joined Arkansas Blue Cross in 1989 and has held several positions in the areas of customer service, sales and marketing and pharmacy. She has more than 28 years of experience in the healthcare industry with a focus on primary care and pharmacy. She has led and managed the development of

12 Arkansas Medical News

patient-centered medical homes, employer clinics and pharmacy programs. Berkemeyer played an instrumental role in Arkansas being chosen as one of only seven regions in the United States to participate in the federal Comprehensive Primary Care initiative and assisted Arkansas in receiving significant funding from the Centers for Medicare Services Innovation Center in the form of a State Innovation Model grant. She earned her bachelor’s degree in business management from John Brown University. Also, she is a graduate of the Advanced Executive Global Program at Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. She is a certified health consultant, a managed healthcare professional and a Professional in the Academy of Healthcare Management. She is active in many industry-specific organizations. She currently serves on the College of Pharmacy Dean’s Advisory Council, CVS Caremark Advisory Board, Cystic Fibrosis Board and the Divine Mercy Clinic Board.

Sonal Bhakta, MD, MPH, FACP Chief Medical Officer Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas 2710 Rife Medical Lane Rogers, AR 72758 479-338-8000 www.mercy.net/nwa

Dr. Bhakta joined Mercy in 2011 as a hospitalist while also working in clinic-level internal medicine and primary care. She became the medical director of hospitalists and division chair of hospital physicians in 2016 before being named vice president of medical affairs in 2019. She also has served as an associate professor in the department of internal medicine at UAMSNorthwest since 2016. Dr. Bhakta earned a Doctor of Medicine and master’s degree in public health from University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock in 2008. She completed a residency in internal medicine at UAMS and has been board certified since 2012.

Michael Birrer, M.D., Ph.D. Director, Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham #623 Little Rock AR 72205 501-526-2272 MJBirrer@uams.edu

Internationally recognized medical oncologist Michael Birrer, M.D., Ph.D., was named vice chancellor and director of the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute at UAMS in 2019. Birrer specializes in gynecologic cancers. Prior to joining UAMS, he served as director of the O’Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. As director of the UAMS Cancer Institute, Birrer leads all cancer-related activities for UAMS, whose cancer clinics reported more than 150,000 patient visits during the last fiscal year. There are about 150 UAMS faculty members engaged in cancer-related research and clinical activities.

Adam Bracks, PT, MBA Chief Executive Officer Siloam Springs Regional Hospital 603 North Progress Ave. Siloam Springs, AR 72761 479-215-3000 Chief Executive Officer Northwest Health Physicians’ Specialty Hospital 3873 Parkview Drive Fayetteville, AR  72703 479-571-7070 www.northwes thealth.com

Bracks is the CEO of Siloam Springs Regional Hospital and Northwest Health Physicians’ Specialty Hospital in Fayetteville. Adam moved to Siloam Springs Seminole, Oklahoma, where he was CEO of Alliance Health Seminole. He has nearly two decades of healthcare leadership experience. Prior to joining Alliance Health, he served as CEO of Southeast HEALTH Center of Stoddard County in Dexter, Missouri.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 He also has significant clinical experience, serving as director of rehabilitation services as well as occupational medicine and primary care at SkyRidge Medical Center in Cleveland, Tennessee. He earned a Bachelor of Science in physiotherapy from Curtin University of Technology in Perth, Australia, and a senior executive master’s degree in business administration from University of Tennessee.

Mellie Bridewell Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Rural Health Partnership Regional Director of Strategy, Management, and Administration University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 1969 Lakehall Road Lake Village, AR 71653 870-265-6553 Melliebridewell@ arruralhealth.org ARruralhealth.org

Bridewell currently works for UAMS as the Director of the Office of Strategic Management and serves as the Arkansas Rural Health Partnership’s Chief Executive Officer. She has eighteen years of experience in community and organizational networking, grant writing, and program development and implementation. She created the Arkansas Rural Health Partnership organization in 2008 which began with five critical access hospitals and has grown to fourteen member hospitals and two FQHCs across the south Arkansas region. Since its beginning, the organization has been recognized nationally as a Rural Health Community Champion for Collaborative Partnerships by the Federal Office of Rural Health and as Outstanding Network of the Year by the National Cooperative of Health Networks Association. Bridewell has a reputation in the state of Arkansas and throughout the country as an ambassador for rural healthcare.  Her ability to convene the appropriate partners and valuable stakeholders has led to state and national recognition. In 2016, Bridewell was acknowledged as a Federal Office of Rural Health’s Rural Health Champion and Arkansas Business Healthcare Hero for Innovation in 2020. 

Josh Bright Vice President of Operations North Arkansas Regional Medical Center 620 N. Main Harrison, AR 72601 870-414-4000 www.narmc.com

Dr. Bright joined the North Arkansas Regional Medical Center team in 2011 as a staff pharmacist. He served as Director of Pharmacy before being promoted to the VP of Operations role in January 2020.  Dr. Bright serves on the Board of Directors for the North Arkansas Partnership for Healthcare Education (NAPHE) and is a 2020 graduate of Leadership Arkansas Class XIV. A native of Jasper, AR, he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BS in Chemistry at Arkansas Tech University and received his Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. Dr. Bright was named the 2017 Arkansas Pharmacists Association Distinguished Young Pharmacist of the Year and was named a 2019 Health Care Professional of the Year Finalist by Arkansas Business.

Troy B. Brooks Chief Financial Officer   Conway Regional Health System  2302 College Avenue  Conway, AR 72034  501-329-3831  www.conway regional.org 

As CFO of Conway Regional Health System, Brooks is responsible for the financial operations of the health system. He leads Conway Regional’s Accounting, Business Office/Admissions and Medical Information teams.  Brooks has more than 39 years of experience in advanced health care financial management and leadership. Brooks holds an MBA from Mercer University and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of South Alabama in Mobile. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives as well as an advanced member of the Healthcare Financial Management Association where he was awarded the Bronze Merit Award for his chapter.  He holds designations for both Green Belt and Black Belt in Six Sigma.

C Darren Caldwell Senior Vice President of Regional Services St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72401 870-207-4505 mdcaldwell@ sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Caldwell oversees all the regional efforts of St. Bernards Healthcare. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and is a former chairman of the Arkansas Hospital Association board of directors.

Lindsey Castleberry Executive Vice President, Chief HR Officer & Chief Legal Counsel White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

Castleberry oversees legal services, human resources, and physician recruiting. Castleberry joined WRHS in 2015 as the system’s in-house legal counsel. A Batesville High School graduate, Castleberry, earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas. He earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of Arkansas School of Law and was admitted to the Arkansas Bar in 2007.

Christina Clark, MBA Vice Chancellor for Institutional Support Services and Chief Operating Officer University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5605 CLClark2@uams.edu

Clark was named vice chancellor for institutional support services and chief operating

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 officer at UAMS in 2019. In this role, Clark oversees campus operations, information technology and the UAMS Police Department. She previously served as interim vice chancellor for administration. Prior to that, she was the chancellor’s chief of staff.

Laura Cook Senior Vice President, Foundation & Mission CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, 72205 501-552-3000 chistvincent.com

As CHI St. Vincent’s senior vice president for the CHI St. Vincent Foundation, Cook oversees fundraising for the nonprofit foundation that supports CHI St. Vincent’s mission and ministry. Before joining CHI St. Vincent six years ago, she was senior vice president for marketing for Alltel Wireless and marketing vice president for Verizon. Cook has a bachelor’s degree in finance and banking and a master’s degree in accounting from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.

Carson Copeland, MBA Clinic Administrator Cornerstone Clinic for Women 9500 Baptist Health Drive, Suite 100 Little Rock, AR 72205 501-224-5500 cornerstoneclinic forwomen.com

Copeland joined Cornerstone Clinic for Women in May 2021. He has over 10 years of healthcare experience in medical clinic operations which includes the startup of 9 clinics, administrative oversight of multiple clinic sites across central Arkansas, process improvement initiatives, and in-depth work with several EHRs.  He is a resident of Conway and is a long-time member of Robinson and Center Church of Christ.  Copeland has a bachelor’s in health care management and a master’s in business administration, both from Harding University.    

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Patricia Cowan, Ph.D., RN Dean, UAMS College of Nursing University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-8493 pacowan@uams.edu

Named dean of the UAMS College of Nursing in 2015, Cowan has more than 30 years of experience in all areas of nursing including academics, clinical practice and research. Cowan received a BS in nursing from the University of Missouri in Columbia, graduating magna cum laude. She received her master’s degree in adult health nursing from the University of Kansas in Kansas City and her doctorate from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, Tennessee.

Sammie Cribbs Chief Operating Officer and Chief Nursing Officer North Arkansas Regional Medical Center 620 N. Main Harrison, AR 72601 870-414-4000 www.narmc.com

Cribbs was appointed Chief Operating Officer effective May of 2018 in addition to continuing to serve in the role of Chief Nursing Officer of North Arkansas Regional Medical Center since 2014. Cribbs joined the NARMC nursing team in 2007 and has served in a variety of clinical nursing roles during this time. Cribbs holds an Associate Degree in nursing from Louisiana Tech University, where she was the recipient of the Clinical Excellence Award. She continued her education at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing in 2008. She completed a Master of Science degree in Nursing Adult Health at Arkansas State University in 2014. Cribbs is a licensed Advanced Practice Nurse and holds a certification in healthcare finance. She currently serves on the board of the North Arkansas Partnership for Health Education and Nursing Advisory Board for College of the Ozarks, as well as many other community support roles. A member of both the American Organization of Nurse Executives and American College of Healthcare Executives, Cribbs was named one of Arkansas’s Outstanding 40 Nurse

Leaders Under 40 in 2015. In June 2021 she will graduate from the Arkansas Leadership class of XV.

D Barry Davis, FACHE   President, Chief Executive Officer   Arkansas Methodist Medical Center   900 West Kingshighway   Paragould, AR  72450   870-239-7105   www.myammc.org  

Davis began his career at AMMC in 1981. He served as Plant Manager and later as Credit Manager, organizing the first Credit and Collection Department for the medical center. He was named Vice President of Operations in 1983 and President and CEO in 2012. He is an American College of Healthcare Executives Fellow, signifying that he is board certified in healthcare management. In 2008, he received the prestigious American College of Healthcare Executives Regent’s Award. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in Public Administration from Arkansas College (Lyon College) and a Master of Public Administration degree from Arkansas State University. He currently serves on the Paragould Economic Development Council, the board of the Vizient Arkansas-Oklahoma region, the Arkansas Hospital Association Board, the Arkansas Hospital Association’s Workers Compensation Trust and the Northeast Arkansas Workforce Investment Board. He is past Chairman of the Paragould Regional Chamber of Commerce and former president of the Arkansas Hospital Administrators Forum. 

E. Scot  Davis Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Urology 1300 Centerview Drive Little Rock, AR  72211 877-321-8452

arkansasurology.com

Davis is CEO of Arkansas Urology, joining the clinic in May of 2013. Having managed physician practices for more than 28 years, his unique areas of expertise are in physician recruitment, joint-venture arrangements and operational/financial efficiency. Prior to joining AU, Davis was a CFO and COO at physician practices in Memphis and Jonesboro. He holds master’s degrees in public administration and

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 business administration. He is a member of the Rotary Club of Little Rock (Club 99), sits on the Board of Directors of the Heart Association, the Arkansas Italian Culture and Food Festival as well as the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce and Fifty for the Future. Additionally, Scot sits on the board of the Large Urology Group Practice Association (LUGPA) Board of Directors, the largest professional association of independent urologists in the US.

Gray Dillard EVP, Chief Operating Officer/Treasurer Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 601 South Gaines Little Rock, AR 72201 501-378-2000

arkansasbluecross.com

Dillard has overall executive responsibility for financial activities for Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, HMO Partners, Inc., and USAble Corporation. He also has executive management responsibility for actuarial services, underwriting, capital management, internal audit and controls, and regulatory and marketplace compliance. In addition, he has executive responsibility for consumer and retail products, corporate marketing, sales competence, and the regional offices. Dillard joined Arkansas Blue Cross in March 1994 as senior accountant for Health Advantage and was promoted to accounting manager of Financial Services and controller of HMO Partners, Inc., in 2000. He served as regional executive in the south-central regional office in Hot Springs from 2005 to 2008. He was promoted to vice president of Financial Services in 2009 and was named chief financial officer and treasurer in 2011. Dillard earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Harding University. He is a certified public accountant. Dillard currently serves on the board of the World Services for the Blind Foundation. He is a past member of the Hot Springs Fifty for the Future and completed the Leadership Hot Springs program.

Marcy Doderer, FACHE President, Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Children’s, Inc. 1 Children’s Way Little Rock, AR 72202 501-364-1100 dodererml@ archildrens.org

Doderer has served as president and chief executive officer at Arkansas Children’s since 2013, leading the state’s only pediatric health system. Under her leadership, Arkansas Children’s transformed from one hospital into a health system, with two hospitals, a research institute, a philanthropic foundation, regional clinics and alliances, telemedicine and statewide outreach programs. Prior to her role at Arkansas Children’s, she served as a member of senior leadership for CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System in various capacities. Doderer became administrator for CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital in 2008 and led the effort to transform the facility into the free-standing Children’s Hospital of San Antonio. Her previous leadership experience includes positions at CHRISTUS St. Joseph’s Health System and McCuistion Regional Medical Center, both in Paris, Texas, and Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas, Dallas, Texas. Doderer is a Fellow in the American College of Health Care Executives (ACHE) and active in many professional organizations. She serves as the Chair of the Children’s Hospital Association Board of Directors and Vice Chair of the Children’s Hospital Solutions for Patient Safety Board of Directors. She is also a member of the American Hospital Association’s The Changing Workforce Task Force. Within Arkansas, Doderer is a member of Fifty for the Future and sits on the board of Healthy Active Arkansas.

Hans Driessnack Chief Executive Officer Northwest Medical Center – Springdale 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

Driessnack is CEO for Northwest Medical Center-Springdale, coming from Heartland Regional Medical Center in Marion, Illinois, where he was COO. Hans has held executive leadership positions in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Galesburg, Illinois; and Marion,

16 Arkansas Medical News

Illinois, serving at two facilities associated with Lovelace Health System, then at Galesburg Cottage Hospital before moving to Heartland. He has valuable experiences in teaching Six Sigma and other continuous quality improvement methodologies to create positive culture changes that support quality care, service and patient satisfaction. Hans earned a Bachelor of Science in hospitality management with a minor in German at the University of Alabama. He earned an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. Hans is active in the local community, serving on the board for the Springdale Chamber of Commerce and the Springdale Downtown Alliance. He also served as United Way Campaign Chair for Washington County. He is a member of the Springdale Rotary Club.

E Dan Eckels Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Washington Regional Medical System 3215 N. North Hills Blvd Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 wregional.com

Eckels joined Washington Regional in 1989 as Director of Accounting. He later became Controller and by 2000 was named Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to joining Washington Regional, Eckels was an auditor for KPMG Peat Marwick in Kansas City, MO. He graduated from Southwest Missouri State University in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He is a CPA and earned a master’s degree in health.

Lee Anne Eddy, DNP, RN, NEA-BC Senior Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer  Arkansas Children’s Hospital  1 Children’s Way  Little Rock, AR 72202  501-364-1100  EddyLA@ archildrens.org    

Eddy has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer at Arkansas Children’s Hospital since 2013.  She began at ACH in September 2011 as the vice


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 president of Ambulatory Services. Prior to joining ACH, she worked extensively at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, at all levels in children’s health from bedside nurse through vice president. Eddy is a board-certified Nurse Executive, Advanced and holds a DNP from Rush University in Chicago. 

Melanie Edens Chief Operating Officer NEA Baptist Health System 4800 East Johnson Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000 www.baptistonline. org/nea

Edens has been a member of the NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital team since 1998. Currently the Chief Operating Officer of NEA Baptist Hospital and NEA Baptist Clinic, she previously served as director of Radiology services for the hospital. As Associate Administrator for the Health System, Edens is responsible for planning, implementing, directing, and controlling activities and operations for all the clinical ancillary departments in the hospital, cancer center, and medical group. Edens also has operational responsibility for NEA Baptist Clinic operations that expand from clinics within the main medical office building to 11 primary care clinics in various locations throughout the region. Edens has been recognized as an Outstanding Alumnus of ASU’s College of Nursing and Health Related professions and the ACHE’s Early Career award for Healthcare Executives. She earned a BS in Radiologic Sciences from Arkansas State University in 2000 and an MBA in 2020. Edens has been involved in several community and civic organizations, including the 2015 class of Leadership Jonesboro.

Cyril O. Ekeh MHA, VHA-CM Associate Medical Center Director Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 4300 West 7th Street Little Rock, AR 72205 501-257-5400 www.littlerock. va.gov

Ekeh was appointed Associate Medical Center Director for Central Arkansas Vet-

arkansasmedicalnews.com

The Leader in Central Arkansas for World Class Pain Management Our staff of caring specialists led by Dr. Amir Qureshi will take good care of your patients and keep you informed along the way! Arkansas Spine and Pain continues to be in full operation to service our area communities and our patients. Each ASAP Clinic is following all the provided State, Federal and CDC Guidelines to prevent the spread and eventually stop to the CoronaVirus/COVID-19. We have substations at each of our clinics that are designed to triage each patient - prior to entering the clinics. Arkansas Spine and Pain has now implemented Telemedicine - so if you have a HIGH RISK patient or a patient that’s exhibiting flu like symptoms - please have them call the corporate call center - and we’ll get their Provider – to assist them. The call center’s primary number is 501.227.0184 – and our Website address is www.ArkansasSpineAndPain.com. We can contact the Provider – with either of these methods. Our team of Pain Treatment Specialist are here to help! If you or your patients have questions regarding upcoming appointments, medical issues or other issues - PLEASE call us! Patient Referral Phone: 501.227.0184 Patient Referral Fax: 501.227.0187

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Arkansas Medical News 17


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 erans Healthcare System (CAVS) effective September 2, 2007. He was the Assistant Medical Center Director at CAVHS from September 2006 to September 2007. He served as Interim Medical Center Director from July 27, 2015, until March 21, 2016. Ekeh is responsible for Fiscal, Human Resources, Engineering, Logistics and Police Services. He also serves as liaison for the Office of Information and Technology, Information Security, and the Veterans Canteen Services. He is a graduate of the Federal Executive Institute, Health Care Leadership Institute, Leadership VA, and Executive Career Field Candidate Development Program. He received a Bachelor of Science in Medical laboratory Technology from Xavier University in 1983, and a graduate degree in Health Care Administration from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in 1989.

Duane Erwin Chief of Hospital Operations Baptist Health 9601 Baptist Health Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-202-2000 baptist-health.com

Erwin has been chief of hospital operations since March 2019. Reporting to him are Baptist Health’s hospitals in Little Rock, North Little Rock, Conway, Malvern, Arkadelphia, Heber Springs and Stuttgart. Prior to joining Baptist Health, Erwin served as CEO of Aspirus Inc. of Wausau, Wisconsin, a six-hospital health system, until his retirement in 2013. He additionally served as interim CEO for hospitals within the Carolinas Healthcare System in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Ascension Health in St. Louis, Missouri. Erwin obtained his juris doctor degree from Duquesne University School of Law in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.

F Rebekah Fincher Chief Administrative Officer Conway Regional Health System 2302 College Avenue Conway, AR 72034 501-329-3831 www.conway regional.org

As Chief Administrative Officer, Fincher is responsible for Growth and Business Development for the organization and

18 Arkansas Medical News

works alongside the CEO to develop and implement Strategy for the organization.  In addition, Fincher provides executive oversight of Medical Staff Affairs, Physicians Relations and Recruitment, Corporate Health Services, Sports Outreach, Wellness and Diabetes Education, and Marketing and Public Relations and serves as the organization’s Designated Institutional Officer (DIO) for Graduate Medical Education. Fincher has more than ten years of experience in health care and leadership.  She holds a master’s degree from University of Arkansas at Little Rock and received her undergraduate degree from the University of Central Arkansas.  She is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, as well as the Association for Staff Physician Recruiters.  She currently serves on the Conway Planning Commission.

Alan J. Finley, FACHE   President Dardanelle Regional Medical Center  200 N. 3rd Street  Dardanelle, AR 72834  479-229-4677 www.dardanelle regional.org 

Finley is President of Dardanelle Regional Medical Center. Finley received a bachelor’s in business administration from Stephen F. Austin State University and a Master of Health Administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where he achieved the Outstanding Alumnus Award in 2006. He is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and achieved that organization’s Early Career Healthcare Executive’s Regents Award. 

Amy Fore, MHSA, FACMPE, FACHE Chief Operating Officer Mercy Clinic Fort Smith 2901 South 74th Street Fort Smith, AR 72903 479-314-1109

Amy.Fore@mercy.net

Fore has served as the Chief Operating Officer for Mercy Clinic Fort Smith Communities since September 2015. In this role, she has oversight of the 13-county service areas in Western Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma with more than 250 physicians and advanced practitioners. She serves on the Arkansas State Board of Pharmacy, the Arkansas State Medical Board’s Centralized Credentials Verification Services Advisory

Committee, and the Women in Leadership council of the American Medical Group Association. She is a member and fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, where she serves on the early careerist committee, and the Medical Group Management Association. She is a member of the 2018 class of Talk Business & Politics’ Forty Under 40. Fore received her bachelor’s degree in health sciences from the University of Arkansas-Little Rock and a master’s degree in health services administration from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

Amy Forrest, RN, CCO Compliance/Privacy Officer Northwest Health 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

Forrest currently serves as vice president of compliance and privacy for Northwest Health and is a certified compliance professional. Graduating magna cum laude from Middle Tennessee State University in nursing, Forrest has over 30 years hospital experience, 20 of these in management positions. She has received state and national awards for her contributions to healthcare education, has been published by the National League of Nursing and the American Hospital Association and is named as Who’s Who in Professional Nursing. Amy joined Northwest Health in 1991 and has served as VP with administrative duties of education, risk, quality/patient safety, health information management, plant operations, medical staff/professional services, case management and pastoral care and as director of Human Resources. She has been compliance officer for Northwest Health since 1997 and privacy/ security Officer since 2003.

David Foster, MD President, Medical Group CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, AR 72205 501 552-3000

www.chistvincent.com

Foster has been president of CHI St. Vincent Medical Group since 2013. His focus is engaging physicians to strengthen and build relationships between aligned physician partners and CHI St. Vincent. Foster joined CHI St. Vincent from


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 CHRISTUS Health where he served as chief medical officer for the CHRISTUS Provider Network. He was also the founding medical director of the CHRISTUS Health Plan and a practicing family medicine physician with the CHRISTUS Spohn Health System in Corpus Christi, Texas. Foster served as executive vice president of the medical staff at CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi – Memorial. In addition to being a board member, Foster served two terms as chair, of the Nueces County Medical Education Foundation, a faculty practice plan affiliated with Texas A&M University. Foster earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Vanderbilt University and a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.

Brian Fowler Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Surgical Hospital 5201 Northshore Drive North Little Rock, AR 72118 501-748-8000 arksurgical hospital.com

Before becoming CEO, Fowler held the position of Chief Operations Officer and Chief Financial Officer. As CEO, he is responsible for Arkansas Surgical Hospital continuing to meet and exceed the expectations of their patients.  Under his leadership, Arkansas Surgical Hospital has been recognized by CMS as the only Double Five – 5 Star hospital in Arkansas.  These ratings are for overall Patient Experience & Overall Patient Safety.  Fowler has been named as one of Arkansas Business’ 40 Under 40 for 2021 and served as President for the Arkansas Chapter of the Healthcare Financial Management Association.  He has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Arkansas State University at Jonesboro and an MBA from Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas.  He is a certified public accountant and is a fellow of the Healthcare Financial Management Association.

David Fox Vice President & Chief Operating Officer Baxter Regional Medical Center 624 Hospital Drive Mountain Home, AR 72653 870-508-1002 www.baxter regional.org

Fox began his professional career in healthcare as a certified Nuclear Medicine Technologist, and prior to joining Baxter Regional Medical Center, he served in management and executive leadership positions with Northwest Texas Hospital in Amarillo, TX; Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa, OK; Baptist Health in Little Rock; and CHI St. Vincent in Central Arkansas. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Arkansas in Conway and his Master of Business Administration from Oklahoma City University in Tulsa, OK. He is a boardcertified healthcare executive and double board fellow of both the American College of Healthcare Executives and the American Healthcare Radiology Administrators, where he served on the national board for six years and as past president for the association.

G Stephanie Gardner, Pharm.D., Ed.D. Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Provost and Chief Strategy Officer University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5558

GardnerStephanie F@ uams.edu

works closely with physician leaders to bridge the clinical and business aspects of health care delivery.

Tammy Gavin Executive Vice President & Chief Clinical Officer White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

Gavin joined WRHS in January 1987. She has served in numerous leadership roles at WRHS. Her career began as an admissions nurse. She then transitioned into the role of Director of Quality and Risk Management. She also served as the Director of Rehabilitation Services and Admissions and then as Assistant Administrator. She then served as Chief Ancillary/ Support Services Officer before serving in her current position.

Ryan Gehrig, FACHE President Mercy Hospital Fort Smith 7301 Rogers Avenue Fort Smith, AR 72903 479-314-6100 ryan.gehrig@ mercy.net

Gehrig was named president of Mercy Hospital Fort Smith in April 2012. He came to Mercy from Norman Regional Health System where he served as vice president of enterprise systems and chief administrative officer for Moore Medical Center, one of the system’s hospitals in Norman, Oklahoma. He previously served as chief operating officer of Wesley Medical Center in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, as CEO and chief operating officer of Bristow Medical Center in Bristow, Oklahoma, and as chief operating officer of Cushing Regional Hospital in Cushing, Oklahoma. Gehrig graduated from Texas A&M University with a bachelor’s degree in biomedical science. He received his master’s in health care administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.

Named chief academic officer and provost in 2015, Gardner works in partnership with UAMS’ five college deans and other leaders across the institution to enrich the campus’ intellectual environment. Gardner works to ensure the university is educating and training health professionals to meet changing health needs and to develop interprofessional and community-based educational experiences. As chief strategy officer, she

arkansasmedicalnews.com

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Ryan Geib Chief Operating Officer Mercy Hospital Fort Smith 7301 Rogers Avenue Fort Smith, AR 72903 479-314-6103 ryan.geib@ mercy.net

Geib became Chief Operating Officer of Mercy Hospital Fort Smith in January 2020. He served previously as assistant administrator for HCA Healthcare’s West Florida Hospital in Pensacola, Florida, HCA director of facility management in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and senior director of facility operations for King’s Daughters’ Health in Madison, Indiana. He has a background in strategy involving things such as access points, new service lines and growth within the health-care industry. In his career, Geib has done close to half a billion dollars in construction growth.

Rhonda Gentry, M.D. Medical Oncologist Medical Director, Oncology CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Dr. Gentry joined CARTI’s medical team in 2013. Today, she leads a team of 16 medical oncologists as the medical director of the medical oncology department. She completed a fellowship in hematology/ oncology, a residency in internal medicine and received her medical degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock.

Amanda George, MHSA, CPA Vice Chancellor for Finance and Chief Financial Officer University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501- 686-5670

ADGeorge@uams.edu

Before she became chief financial officer in 2019, George served as associate vice

20 Arkansas Medical News

chancellor for clinical finance and CFO of the integrated clinical enterprise. She joined UAMS in 2013 as administrator for the Department of Internal Medicine, then in 2015 became administrator for the Medical Specialties services line. Before joining UAMS, she served as controller for ambulatory services for the East/Southeast division of Catholic Health Initiatives in Little Rock and assistant controller for St. Vincent Health System hospitals in North Little Rock and Morrilton. George has a Master of Health Services Administration degree.

Bryan Gibbs Chief Support Services Officer  Conway Regional Health System  2302 College Avenue  Conway, AR 72034  501-329-3831  www.conway regional.org 

As Chief Support Officer, Gibbs leads Conway Regional’s facility/plant operations, Clinical Engineering, Environmental Services, Supply Chain, Nutritional Services, Safety/Security/Communication, and construction/renovations. Gibbs has over 37 years of health care experience and holds an MBA and Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Administration.  

Brian Gittens, Ed.D., MPA Vice Chancellor for Diversity Equity and Inclusion University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-603-1159 BGittens@uams.edu

Gittens was named vice chancellor for diversity, equity and inclusion in 2019. He is a seasoned diversity and human resources professional, researcher, educator and consultant who has successfully led and collaborated on the design and implementation of diversity and inclusion strategies, community engagement programs and cultural competency initiatives. He joins UAMS from the School of Medicine and Public Health at the University of WisconsinMadison, where he led efforts to advance equity and inclusion as the associate dean for human resources, equity and inclusion.

Michael Givens Administrator St. Bernards Medical Center 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro AR 72401 870-207-4421 mgivens@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Givens has served as administrator of St. Bernards Medical Center since 2010 and has been a part of the St. Bernards team since 2001. His responsibilities include planning, organizing and directing operations of the medical center. He holds Fellow status in the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), serves as the American College of Healthcare Executives’ Regent for Arkansas and is a board member of the Arkansas Healthcare Executives Forum. Givens has received the ACHE Regent’s Early Career Award as well as the C.E. Melville Young Administrator of the Year Award from the Arkansas Hospital Association.

Carol Gore Chief Nursing Officer Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 1808 W. Main Street Russellville, Arkansas 72801 479-964-2841

Gore was named Chief Nursing Officer of Saint Mary’s Regional Health System in 2015.  An Arkansas native, Gore from Northeast Arkansas, has been a Registered Nurse for 30 years and a Chief Nursing Officer for 14 years.  Prior to her arrival at Saint Mary’s, she served as the Chief Nursing Officer for hospitals in East Arkansas and Northwest Arkansas.   

Steve Goss, MD President Mercy Clinic Northwest Arkansas 2710 Rife Medical Lane Rogers, AR 72758 479-338-3270 www.mercy.net/nwa

Dr. Goss has served Mercy Clinic Northwest Arkansas since 2003. As president, he works with 220+ multispecialty integrated provider group at 48 clinic locations. Board certified in pediatrics and internal medicine, Goss has practiced medicine since 1983 and in Northwest Arkansas since 1987. Originally from Pine Bluff, Arkansas, he earned his medical degree from the


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he also completed his residency training in internal medicine/pediatrics.

Meredith Green, MSN, APRN, AGCNS-BC Senior Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer Washington Regional Medical System 3215 N North Hills Blvd Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 wregional.com

Formerly Administrative Director in Women and Infants Services, Green was named Senior Vice President and CNO in 2017. Green earned both a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in nursing at the University of Arkansas and received credentialing as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult and Geriatric Health. She served in various leadership roles including clinical director and educator and was selected by her peers as Director of the Year in 2017 and 2016, and as Nurse of the Year in Women’s Services in 2009. Green received the ANGELS Award from UAMS for Outstanding Service to Obstetrical Nursing.

Michael S. Griffin Market Practice Administrator Northwest Physicians 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR  72764 479-757-8000

administration, with a focus on healthcare administration, from Western Governors University. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and the Medical Group Management Association.

Paula Grimes Chief Nursing Officer NEA Baptist Health System 4800 E. Johnson Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000

www.nwphysicians.com

Griffin oversees the primary care and specialty care clinics affiliated with Northwest Physicians, part of Northwest Health, in approximately 50 locations throughout northwest Arkansas. An experienced executive with significant health care work, Griffin has more than 30 years of leadership experience. Before joining Northwest Physicians in 2019, Michael served as director of practice management for Ottumwa Regional Healthcare, where he directed operations of a large multi-specialty physician practice affiliated with the Ottumwa, Iowa hospital. Prior to that, he was director of practice management for Southeast Health Regional System, where he oversaw operations for approximately 50 physicians and other providers in Cape Girardeau, MO. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business and administration from University of Phoenix and a master’s degree in business

www.baptistonline. org/nea

Grimes has been a member of the NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital team since 1996. Currently the chief nursing officer, she previously served as director of ICU and CV services for the hospital. As chief nursing officer, Grimes is responsible for planning, implementing, directing and controlling activities and operations in nursing and rehabilitation services as well as in patient care areas on the main hospital campus and at the Surgical Hospital of Jonesboro. Grimes earned a BS in nursing degree from Arkansas State University and a Master of Science in Nursing from University of Phoenix. She is a member of the American Association of Critical Care

William E (Bill) Greene III President MD Growth                                                                     P.O. Box 250743 Little Rock, Arkansas 72205 501-232-0787 MDGrowth.com

Greene has 30 years of experience in healthcare, most recently as the founding CEO of Premier Gastroenterology where he was responsible for the creation of a new medical practice and the development of a $35 million medical plaza which houses medical clinics and an ambulatory surgery center. Through MD Growth he advises physicians on new clinic start-ups, growth strategy, practice valuation and marketing. He has provided services to 30 medical practices in 12 states, including 12 new practice start-ups. Greene was selected Best Boss in Arkansas in 2020 and was a Healthcare Hero finalist in the healthcare innovation category.

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Arkansas Medical News 21


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Nurses and Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society for Nursing. She received the NEA chapter of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, “Excellence in Nursing of the Critically Ill Patient” award in 1999 and 2001. She also served on the American Heart Association board from 2000-2003.

Shanda Guenther, RN, BSN, MSLE, CPPS, CPHQ Chief Quality Officer Northwest Health 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

Guenther is chief quality officer for Northwest Health, coming from a large physician practice where she was chief operating officer. Previously, Guenther had served Northwest Health as assistant CNO, chief quality officer and director of quality management and regulatory compliance. She holds a Bachelor of Science in nursing as well as a Master of Science in leadership and ethics, and she is a certified professional in healthcare quality as well as a certified professional in patient safety. She also holds a Simpler Bronze certification. Guenther was the 2009 Employee of the Year at Willow Creek Women’s Hospital and the 2012 Non-Clinical Director of the Year for Northwest Health Springdale.

H Maureen Halligan Senior Vice President, Strategy & Business Development CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, 72205 501-552-3000 chistvincent.com

Halligan is the senior vice president, strategy and business development at CHI St. Vincent. She most recently served as vice president, strategic planning and business development, at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Prior to that, Halligan served as vice president of strategic planning for the central Texas division of Baylor Scott & White Health for four years. She began her career at Genesys Health System in Grand Blanc, Michigan as director of strategic planning. Halligan earned a bachelor’s in business administration and an MBA from the University of Michigan. She is also a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

22 Arkansas Medical News

Ray Hanley President and Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care 1020 W. 4th Street, Suite 300 Little Rock, AR 72201 501-212-8610 rhanley@afmc.org www.afmc.org

Hanley is President and Chief Executive Officer of AFMC, an established nonprofit health care improvement organization that provides education, outreach, data analysis, information technology, medical case review and marketing/communications services. He joined AFMC in 2010, overseeing the executive leadership team. Hanley spent 28 years with the Arkansas Department of Human Services, 16 of which were as director of Arkansas Medicaid. He served seven years as the client industry executive for the State Health and Human Services business aspect of HP, working exclusively outside the state of Arkansas. In 2007, the company recognized Hanley as Global Client Industry Executive of the year. He served as chair of the National Association of Medicaid Directors for five years and remains an active alumnus of that association. He is a member of the Healthy Active Arkansas board of directors and a board member of the American Healthcare Quality Association.

Matthew Hardee, M.D., Ph.D. Radiation Oncologist Medical Director, Radiation Oncology CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

A member of CARTI’s medical team since 2015, Dr. Hardee was named medical director of the radiation oncology department in 2018. After graduating from Duke University School of Medicine, Dr. Hardee completed an internship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York. He then completed his residency in radiation oncology at New York University School of Medicine, where he served as Chief Resident.

Misti Harvey, PharmD Senior Vice President, Medical Oncology CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Harvey has specialized in oncology for more than 18 years and previously served as CARTI’s director of clinical pharmacists. She received her Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, College of Pharmacy. She worked as a clinical pharmacist at Baptist Health Medical Center prior to joining Little Rock Hematology Oncology Associates in 2002.

David Hays, M.D. Diagnostic and Interventional Radiologist Medical Director, Imaging and Interventional Radiology CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

A member of CARTI’s medical team since 2015, Dr. Hays serves as medical director of imaging and interventional radiology, overseeing a state-of-the-art imaging department with locations across the state. Dr. Hays has been instrumental in growing the department to include outside referrals to the imaging center and increasing service lines. Board certified in diagnostic radiology, with a subspecialty in vascular and interventional radiology, Dr. Hays graduated from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences where he also completed his residency. He then completed his fellowship at the Angio/Interventional Radiology Miami Vascular Institute in Miami, Florida.

Adam Head, FACHE President and CEO CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

After more than 12 years’ experience in healthcare administration, in addition to four years with the U.S. Army Medical Service Corps, Head joined CARTI as president


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 and chief executive officer in September 2017. In his role, Head drives CARTI’s vision to be the cancer treatment destination. Under Head’s leadership, CARTI’s statewide presence has increased from 12 treatment locations in 11 communities across the state to 19 locations in 16 communities. Since November 2018, CARTI has opened three additional cancer centers in Conway, Russellville and North Little Rock, and is currently under construction on two more in El Dorado (Summer 2021) and Pine Bluff (January 2022). Head received an MBA from Capella University and is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE).

Vickie Henderson, MD Chief Medical Officer Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 1808 W. Main Street

Russellville, Arkansas 72801 479-964-9252 Dr. Henderson began her practice at Millard Henry Clinic in 1995. Over her 20-year career as an obstetrician/gynecologist, she delivered more than 5,000 babies. She assumed the role of Chief Medical Officer four years ago focusing on quality, EMR optimization and combating burn out. Because of a serious illness, she brings a unique perspective to healthcare. She is also an author and national speaker who shares her panoramic view of medicine through the eyes of a physician, patient and administrator.

Shannon Hendrix, MS, RD, LD Chief Administrator Arkansas Children’s Northwest 2601 Gene George Boulevard Springdale, AR 72762 479-725-6800 hendrixso@ archildrens.org

Hendrix began serving a chief administrator of ACNW in 2020, leading the full-service hospital, which served more than 31,000 unique patients last fiscal year. Hendrix’s experience at Arkansas Children’s has included leadership responsibilities with teams ranging from clinical operations, such as Radiology and Laboratory, to the social support services at the heart of delivering family-centered care, including Social Work and Pastoral Care. She has most recently served as vice president of clinical and diagnostic services for Arkansas

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Children’s Hospital. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Nutrition from the University of Central Arkansas.

Debbie Henry Vice President & Chief Financial Officer Baxter Regional Medical Center 624 Hospital Drive Mountain Home, AR 72653 870-508-1445 www.baxter regional.org

Henry became Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Baxter Regional Medical Center in 2016. She has 15 years of hospital financial management experience having previously served as Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer at North Arkansas Regional Medical Center. Before her healthcare experience, she was the Director of Finance for Dover Resources, Inc., in Tulsa and Duncan Parking Technologies in Harrison. She began her financial career in public accounting with KPMG serving healthcare and manufacturing clients. Henry earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Missouri State University and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Steve Henson Chief Executive Officer Bradley County Medical Center 404 South Bradley Street Warren, AR 71671 870-226-4303 www.bradleycounty medicalcenter.com

Henson was named the CEO of Bradley County Medical Center in January 2017. He is in his 32nd year of serving in Arkansas healthcare and now at his third hospital to serve at the administrative level. He began his career working on ambulances as a paramedic in Little Rock and since then has worked in or with all areas of hospital operations. He earned his undergraduate degree in emergency administration and management from Arkansas Tech University. Additionally, Henson holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law.

Louise Hickman Vice President, Patient Care Services & Chief Nursing Officer Jefferson Regional Medical Center 1600 West 40th Avenue Pine Bluff, AR 71603 870-541-7100 www.jrmc.org

Hickman has been with Jefferson Regional since 1988 when she was recruited to help launch a new cardiac program. She received a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Arkansas State University, and a master’s in health services administration from Webster University. In 2003, she was named Vice President of Patient Care Services/Chief Nursing Officer. Hickman is a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives and is President of the Arkansas Organization of Nurse Executives. She was a past board member of the Arkansas Association of Healthcare Quality.

Ashlie Hilbun, EdD, CFRE   Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer  Arkansas Children’s, Inc.  1 Children’s Way  Little Rock, Arkansas 72202  501-364-1100  hilbunaj@ archildrens.org  

Hilbun leads planning efforts, advances business strategy and oversees strategic marketing for the state’s only pediatric health system. In the chief strategy officer position, Hilbun is also responsible for new business development and outreach focused on advancing child health initiatives as part of Arkansas Children’s bold new vision: “Our promise: Unprecedented child health. Defined and delivered.” Prior to her promotion, she served as a leader with the Arkansas Children’s Foundation, where she most recently served as vice president of philanthropy, co-leading the system’s overall fundraising strategy and crafting external messaging and storytelling. Hilbun currently serves on the HealthTech Arkansas Strategic Advisory Board, the Easter Seals Arkansas Board, and the Walton College of Business Executive Education Advisory Board. 

Arkansas Medical News 23


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Stuart Hill Vice President/ Treasurer   Unity Health   3214 East Race Ave.   Searcy, AR 72143   501-380-1001    stuart.hill@unityhealth.org   

Hill started at Unity Health (formerly White County Medical Center) in 1988 as Vice President/Treasurer and continues to hold that position. He began his healthcare career with Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. in 1977. Mr. Hill obtained his BBA from the University of Memphis and his MBA from Arkansas State University. The Unity Health System is composed of four hospital sites and over 20 physician clinics spanning six counties. Unity Health is a proud partner of the Mayo Clinic Care Network and supports residency programs in Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, Psychiatry, Emergency Medicine and Transitional Year.  

Melony Hilton, RN, MBA, CMPE, CPHRM, CCM – Medical Practice Consultant & Account Executive SVMIC P O Box 532 England, AR 72046 501-993-6357 melonyh@svmic.com www.svmic.com

Hilton works as a consultant and account executive with the Medical Practice Services/Business Development Departments of SVMIC. She is a Registered Nurse and has a Master of Business Administration. She is a Board-Certified Medical Practice Consultant and is Certified in Healthcare Risk Management and Clinical Case Management. Hilton has 25 years of experience in the healthcare industry working in physician practices, hospitals, academic medical centers and home health care. She has held clinical leadership roles as well as business and operational management positions. In her role as a Medical Practice Consultant & Account Executive she works directly with physicians and staff on business operation strategies as well as, patient experience, clinical operations, and risk management. Additionally, she provides support to practices on issues related to their professional medical liability policy.

24 Arkansas Medical News

Ashley Hixon Chief Clinical Officer Arkansas Heart Hospital – Encore 1901 Encore Way Bryant, AR 72019 501-213-4500 Arheart.com

Hixon is a native of Saline County, where she currently resides. She obtained her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.   She has been with Arkansas Heart Hospital since 2000, holding several positions including as a nurse in the post anesthesia care unit and the cardiac catheterization laboratory.  In 2006, she was chosen as Interim Team leader of the Cath/ EP lab which transitioned into a permanent position. That leadership role grew to include responsibility of the entire first floor of the hospital including Day Patient, Emergency Department, Short Stay Unit, Operating Room, GI and Post Anesthesia Care Unit.  In 2013, she obtained a Master of Healthcare Administration and functioned as Senior Clinical Director of Outpatient Services. Hixon began her transition to Chief Clinical Officer of AHH Encore in 2019 and has been diligently working on clinical responsibilities to ensure the team meets the expectation of the continued culture of Arkansas Heart Hospital.

Shuk-Mei Ho, Ph.D. Vice Chancellor for Research University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-7000 shukmeiho@ uams. edu

Internationally renowned scientist Shuk-Mei Ho, Ph.D., joined UAMS as vice chancellor for research and a professor in the College of Medicine Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology in 2019. Before coming to UAMS, Ho was the Jacob G. Schmidlapp Professor and chairwoman of the Department of Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. She recruited over two dozen faculty members and successfully renewed three times an Environmental Health Sciences Center grant named Center for Environmental Genetics (P30), funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.

Kevin Hodges Senior Vice President of Administrative Services St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro AR 72401 870-207-4284 khodges@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Hodges oversees the operations of several divisions for St. Bernards Healthcare. Among those are Senior Services, Population Health Management, Facilities Management, Bio-medical, Rehabilitative, Security and Safety, and Continuum of Care Services. He holds fellow status in the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Robert C. (Bob) Honeycutt Chief Executive Officer Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 1808 West Main Street Russellville, Arkansas 72801 479-964-2841

Honeycutt was named CEO at Saint Mary’s Regional Health System in April 2020, bringing 23 years of healthcare leadership to his new role. He came to Saint Mary’s from Ennis, Texas, where he was market CEO of Ennis Regional Medical Center and Parkview Regional Hospital, also affiliated with LifePoint Health in Brentwood, Tennessee. Prior to joining LifePoint Health, he led not-for-profit and for-profit hospitals in Arizona, Tennessee, Illinois and Georgia. Honeycutt has a bachelor’s in business administration degree from Baylor University and a Master of Healthcare and Business Administration degree from the University of Houston-Clear Lake. He is a Certified Healthcare Executive in the American College of Healthcare Executives.


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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Michael Howard, BSN, MM, MSN, MHA, NE-BC Chief Nursing Officer Arkansas Children’s Northwest 2601 Gene George Boulevard Springdale, AR 72762 479-725-6800 howardmf@ archildrens.org

Howard is responsible for planning, organizing, and directing the overall operations of Nursing/Patient Care services at ACNW. He was part of the team that oversaw construction and opening of ACNW in 2018 and is currently overseeing the expansion of operating rooms and IMU implementation. Howard led ACNW through Solutions for Patient Safety membership, designed to improve quality of care and patient outcomes. Prior to his current role, he served as Director of Pediatric Emergency Services at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio.

Leslie Huitt Chief Financial Officer Bradley County Medical Center 404 South Bradley Street Warren, AR 71671 870-226-4303 www.bradleycounty medicalcenter.com

Huitt was named the Chief Financial Officer of Bradley County Medical Center in April 2021, after serving a year as Controller at BCMC. As CFO, she is responsible for financial oversight of the hospital, BCMC Rural Health Clinic, and Home Health Agency. Huitt graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello in May 2002 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. She obtained her Master of Business Administration in December 2006 from Harding University. Huitt also holds a CPA license.

26 Arkansas Medical News

Jeff Hunnicutt Chief Executive Officer Highlands Oncology 3901 Parkway Circle Springdale, Arkansas 72762 479-334-2430 highlandson cology.com

As Highland Oncology’s first CEO, Hunnicutt joined the Northwest Arkansas practice in 2018, overseeing Highland’s four comprehensive cancer centers in Rogers, Springdale and Fayetteville. A native of Washington State, Hunnicutt has more than 16 years of oncology experience, most recently serving as COO of Northwest Medical Specialties in Tacoma. He also served as executive director of the Quality Cancer Care Alliance and participated on the CMMI OCM Redesign team with the Community Oncology Alliance and the Value Based Care Reform group with Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI). Hunnicutt received his Bachelor of Science in Informational Technology and Organizational Management from Northwest University and currently serves as a board member of Arkansas Arts Academy in Rogers.

Kelli Huntley Chief Operating Officer Mercy Clinic Northwest Arkansas 2112 South 54th St. Rogers, AR 72758 479-338-3474 www.mercy.net/nwa

Huntley was named chief operating officer for Mercy Clinic in 2020. She joined Mercy in 2012 as director of finance for Mercy Clinic and was promoted in 2018 to vice president for finance for both Mercy Hospital and Mercy Clinic. Huntley has nearly 20 years of financial management experience spanning manufacturing, nonprofit ministry and health care. She earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting from the University of Arkansas and a Master of Business Administration from Texas A&M University.

David Hunton, MD, FACS President Mercy Clinic Fort Smith 2901 South 74th Street Fort Smith, AR 72903 479-314-6307 david.hunton@ mercy.net

Dr. Hunton was named Mercy Fort Smith Clinic President in July 2019. He served previously as Mercy Fort Smith’s chief medical officer since 2012, where his focus was on the quality and safety of medical care. He is a board-certified general surgeon who has practiced at Mercy for more than 30 years. He has held other leadership roles, including chief of staff. Hunton completed medical school and residency at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences after receiving his undergraduate degree from the University of Arkansas. He is board certified in health care quality management and has been the physician lead of the CMO Specialty Council.

Terry Hurt Chief Financial Officer Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas (MANA) 3383 North MANA Court, Suite 201 Fayetteville, Arkansas 72703 479-571-6780 www.mana.md

As Chief Financial Officer for MANA, Hurt directs the Accounting, Human Resources, Tax, and Internal Audit Departments. He administers MANA’s benefit plans and manages all financial aspects of MANA’s operations. Hurt has a BS in Accounting from Arkansas Tech in Russellville, Arkansas. He joined MANA in December of 2019 with 18 years of valuable experience in accounting for healthcare systems. Hurt was the Controller at Sparks Health in Fort Smith, the Assistant CFO at White River Medical System in Batesville, and Controller at Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Amy Huycke, RN, MS   Associate Director Patient Care Services   Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks   1100 N. College Ave  Fayetteville, AR 72703  479-443-4301   www.fayettevillear. va.gov  

Huycke is the Associate Director Patient Care Services at Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks. Huycke was the ADPCS at the Alexandria VA Health Care System in Alexandria, Louisiana, prior to this appointment. She has program and practice responsibility for nurses throughout the medical center, across all services and locations. Nursing, Chaplain Service, Voluntary Service & Sterile Processing Services are in her line. Huycke received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois and a Master of Science in Nursing at the Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. A native of the state of Illinois, she has worked for the VA for 34 years, beginning as a graduate nurse technician, progressing to staff nurse, head nurse, clinic director, associate chief nurse, acting nurse executive and currently serving in the nurse executive role.   

I Shawna Ives Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

Ives has 13 years of experience in financing. She has served at WRHS for 5 years. She began as a Senior Accountant. She was then promoted to Controller and then to Chief Financial Officer in 2019. Ives earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from the University of Central Arkansas.

arkansasmedicalnews.com

J Bryan G. Jackson Senior Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer Jefferson Regional Medical Center 1600 West 40th Avenue Pine Bluff, Arkansas 71603 870-541-7100 www.jrmc.org

Jackson has over 25 years of experience in healthcare finance. He began as an auditor for a regional CPA firm and then progressed through financial management positions at for-profit and non-profit hospitals in rural and small urban settings. Having previously served as Accounting Manager and Controller, he returned to Jefferson Regional in March 2011 as CFO. Jackson recently moved into the Chief Administrative Officer role in a strategic realignment at Jefferson Regional. A long-time member of the Healthcare Financial Management Association, Jackson earned Fellow status in 2009 and is a past president of the Arkansas Chapter. He is a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Management Accountant, with a BBA degree in Accounting from Harding University and an MBA from The University of Alabama. Jackson is a past board member of Fifty for the Future of Pine Bluff. He currently serves on the board of the Pine Bluff Area Community Foundation and is president of the board of the Boys and Girls Club of Jefferson County.

Drew Jackson President Arkansas Heart Hospital 1701 South Shackleford Road Little Rock, AR 72211 501-219-7307 drew.jackson@ arheart.com

Jackson is President of Arkansas Heart Hospital and oversees the expansion and strategic vision for the organization. He is instrumental in recruiting physicians and surgeons, creating new hospital clinics, and implementing new hospital service lines. Jackson was raised in Little Rock and graduated from UA Little Rock with a degree in finance. He joined Arkansas Heart Hospital in 2014 and previously served as the Chief Strategy Officer.

Laura James, M.D. Director, UAMS Translational Research Institute Associate Vice Chancellor for Clinical and Translational Research University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-364-1418

JamesLauraP@uams. edu James has been director of the UAMS Translational Research Institute (TRI) since 2014. She has a 26-year history of translational research in clinical pharmacology and toxicology at UAMS and Arkansas Children’s. As TRI director, James oversees development of key services to help researchers achieve their clinical and translational science goals. The Translational Research Institute was established with significant UAMS support after receiving a 2009 Clinical and Translational Science Award from the National Institutes of Health National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences.

Jeremy L. Jeffery, CPA Vice President, Chief Financial Officer Jefferson Regional Medical Center 1600 West 40th Avenue Pine Bluff, AR 71603 870-541-7100 www.jrmc.org

Jeffery has served in various roles in financial and strategic leadership for Jefferson Regional, including Controller and Vice President of Strategy and Business Analytics, prior to being named Chief Financial Officer. Before joining Jefferson Regional in 2008, Jeffery began his career in 2003 as a healthcare auditor and consultant with BKD, LLP in Little Rock, Arkansas, later joining Hudson Cisne & Co. LLP in Little Rock. Jeffery is an alumnus of the University of Central Arkansas, a Certified Public Accountant, and a Fellow of the Healthcare Financial Management Association, with 17 years’ experience in his field. He is a past board chairperson for STEP Ministries in North Little Rock, Arkansas.

Arkansas Medical News 27


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Robbie Johnson Executive Director of the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation NEA Baptist Health System 4800 E. Johnson Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000 www.baptistonline. org/nea

Johnson is a lifelong resident of Jonesboro graduating from Jonesboro High School and Arkansas State University with a degree in Communications. He joined NEA Baptist in 2011 as the Director of Development where he was charged with raising funds for the foundation. In 2018, Robbie was promoted to the Executive Director position where he oversees the foundations 6 programs along with fundraising for the health system. Robbie and his wife Stacey have been married for 30 years and have three kids.

LaDonna Johnston Vice President/ Administrator for Unity Health-Newport  Unity Health   1205 McLain Street  Newport, AR 72112  870-523-3005   ladonna.johnston@ unity-health.org  

Johnston has worked in healthcare for more than 30 years. Having started her healthcare career as a candy striper, Johnston has worked in various facets of patient care. As a registered nurse, she has served as a nurse, nurse manager, nurse educator, vice president of nursing services, vice president of patient care services and currently serves as the at Unity HealthNewport VP/Administrator. In addition to her work in healthcare, she has also served as an adjunct faculty member for Harding University’s College of Nursing. Her hard work has been instrumental in earning the hospital multiple healthcare awards and recognitions such as three Arkansas Governor’s Quality Awards and Small Hospital of the Year in 2019 for Unity Health-Newport from the Arkansas Business Health Care Heroes awards.   

28 Arkansas Medical News

Gerry Jones, MD Vice President of Medical Affairs & Chief Medical Officer, Infirmary CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, 72205 501-552-3000 chistvincent.com

Dr. Jones serves as vice president for medical affairs for CHI St. Vincent’s Central Arkansas system and chief medical officer for the Infirmary in Little Rock. A cardiothoracic surgeon with extensive administrative experience, Jones is a native of El Dorado, Arkansas. He received his Bachelor of Science with Distinction from Rhodes College and his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Arkansas College of Medicine. He completed his residency and fellowship at Cornell University.

Rex Jones Chief Executive Officer & Administrator Magnolia Regional Medical Center 101 Hospital Drive Magnolia AR  71753 870-235-3000 magnoliarmc.org

Jones is the current CEO / Administrator of Magnolia Regional Medical Center. Having more than 20 years of hospital leadership, he has worked for both for-profit and not-for profit hospital organizations in Arkansas, Kansas and Oklahoma prior to coming to Magnolia. He received much of his training while working for a hospital management company that managed more than 125 hospitals across the US. He was most recently recognized as the 2016 Administrator of the Year by the Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association. Jones began his career in healthcare while in the US Army where he trained as an Environmental Health Technician and a Respiratory Therapist. He proudly served his country as both an enlisted soldier and an Officer in the US Army and served in various posts and spent time overseas in Desert Storm. Jones is the recipient of several military awards including the Bronze Star as well as two Army Commendation medals. He holds an MBA degree and a BS degree in Biology. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Ty Jones Marketing Director NEA Baptist Health System 4800 E Johnson

Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000

www.baptistonline. org/nea Jones has been with NEA Baptist since 2019. He currently specializes in the formulation and implementation of integrated marketing strategies to achieve operational volume goals for the health system. Jones also manages events, public relations, and all communications for NEA Baptist. A native of Bono, Arkansas; Jones has earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Williams Baptist University where he played baseball, and a master’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Health Care Management from Columbia Southern University. A former Professor of Marketing, Jones established the Men’s and Women’s Golf Team at Williams Baptist University. He is also a 10-year veteran in the radio industry where he held titles from Sales Account Executive to On-Air Personality. Jones serves as Vice President on the Board of Directors for the Young Professionals of the American Cancer Society, and PresidentElect for Jonesboro Young Professionals. Jones has won awards from the Missouri Broadcaster’s Association, The American Advertising Federation, and The American Cancer Society. A graduate of Leadership Jonesboro, Jones continues to serve as a volunteer to evolve Jonesboro into a destination community for Arkansas and the surrounding region.

Will Jones Chief Financial Officer Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 1808 W. Main Street Russellville, Arkansas 72801 479-964-2841 Will joined Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center as CFO in May 2021. He has more than 20 years of professional experience including more than 10 years’ experience in hospital finance in Kentucky and Iowa, serving most recently as CFO for Ottumwa Regional Health Center in Ottumwa, Iowa.


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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 John Jordin, MHSA Chief Information Officer Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas (MANA) 3383 North MANA Court, Suite 201 Fayetteville, Arkansas 72703 479-571-6780 www.mana.md

As Chief Information Officer for MANA, Jordin monitors the interactions of business operations for the 17 clinics and manages the Information Systems Department including the implementation of electronic medical records and medical practice software. He was a principal in the formation of MANA in 2000 and served as administrator of FirstCare Family Doctors, one of the initiating physician practices. Jordin is a native of Arkansas, reared in Little Rock. He received his B.S. in business administration from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, and his master’s degree in health service administration from the University of Arkansas, Little Rock. Jordin is a state and national member of the Medical Group Management Association. 

K Patrick Kerrwood Chief Executive Officer Northwest Medical Center – Bentonville 3000 Medical Center Parkway Bentonville, AR 72712 479-553-1000 www.northwest health.com

Kerrwood returned to Northwest Arkansas in March of 2021 and took the reins as Chief Executive Officer of the Bentonville hospital. Previously he was the Chief Executive Officer of two hospitals in Philadelphia and locally Siloam Springs Regional Hospital and Physicians’ Specialty Hospital. Kerrwood has a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Louisiana in Shreveport.

30 Arkansas Medical News

L Jeremy Land, MBA, CMD, BSRT (T) (R) (CT) (QM) Senior Vice President, Radiation Oncology and Imaging CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Land joined CARTI in September 2017 after serving as the Director of Oncology Services for Porter Adventist Hospital and Regional Director of Radiation Oncology for the South Denver Operation Group of Centura Health in Denver concurrently. Land completed his bachelor’s degree in Radiologic Technology at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches and Shreveport, Louisiana in 2002. He later attended the CARTI Radiation Therapy School from 2003 to 2004. After that he obtained his certification as a Medical Dosimetrist in 2010. Land went on to receive his MBA from Colorado State University in 2015. He is registered in Radiation Therapy, Radiography, Computed Tomography, and Quality Management and is a Certified Medical Dosimetrist.

John Lieblong Vice President of Healthcare Services St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro AR 72401 870-932-7024 jlieblong@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Lieblong provides oversight for approximately 100 physicians employed by St. Bernards as well as oversight for operations of about 20 different St. Bernards-affiliated clinics. The clinics represent about 25 different medical specialties, with physicians seeing patients in more than a dozen different towns and communities throughout Northeast  Arkansas. He received the American College of Healthcare Executives Early Career Regent’s Award in 2015.

Vince Leist President and CEO North Arkansas Regional Medical Center 620 N. Main Harrison, AR 72601 870-414-4000 www.narmc.com

Leist was named President and CEO of North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in July 2011. He is an accomplished healthcare executive with more than 30 years of progressive healthcare management experience. Mr. Leist was named Administrator of the Year by the Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association in 2013, and he has long been an advocate for Veterans Healthcare. In 2015, he was selected to represent America’s hospitals testifying for the American Hospital Association in front of the House Veterans Affairs Committee. Mr. Leist currently serves on the Board of the Arkansas Hospital Association representing hospitals in the North-west Arkansas District. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Ottawa University in Kansas and a Master of Public Administration in public health from the University of Kansas.

Dr. Roddy Lochala  Chief Medical Officer   Unity Health   3214 East Race Ave.   Searcy, AR 72143   501-380-1006    roddy.lochala@UnityHealth.org  

Dr. Lochala is a board-certified family physician who joined Unity Health in 2019 after 17 years in private practice. Serving as Chief Medical Officer, he focuses on improving system processes that lead to better safety, access, and outcomes. Dr. Lochala has served the Arkansas Tobacco Settlement Commission since 2009. He is a retired Air National Guard colonel who concluded his career as Chief of Aerospace Medicine. He serves on the board of directors for El Puente, the Hispanic Services Center in Searcy. An Arkansas native, Lochala is a graduate of the University of Arkansas and Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences. Dr. Lochala completed his family medicine residency at UAMS/AHEC – South Arkansas, in El Dorado.  


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Susan Long, Ed.D. Dean, UAMS College of Health Professions University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-686-5731 LongSusanL@ uams. edu

Longtime educator and administrator Susan Long, Ed.D., was named dean of the College of Health Professions at UAMS in 2018. The college offers programs that provide education, service and research in the allied health professions. Long joined the UAMS faculty in 1992 as an assistant professor in the college’s dental hygiene program, where she is now a professor. In addition to associate dean for academic affairs in the college, she has been serving as associate director of clinical programs in the UAMS Center for Dental Education.

Angie Longing, BSN, MHSM, RN, NE-BC Vice President of Nursing/Chief Nursing Officer Conway Regional Health System 2302 College Avenue Conway, AR 72034 501-329-3831 www.conway regional.org

Longing is the Chief Nursing Officer for Conway Regional Health System. She is also responsible for nursing services at Dardanelle Regional Medical Center and CHI St. Vincent Morrilton. Longing is a proven leader with more than 26 years of nursing and management experience. Longing has a Master of Arts in Health Services Management from Webster University as well as a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from UCA. As chief nursing officer for Conway Regional, CHI-St Vincent Morrilton, and Dardanelle Regional Medical Center, Longing oversees the patient care provided by more than 900 licensed and unlicensed nursing staff. Longing was recognized in 2020 as Administrator of the Year for the North Metro Healthcare Region by the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce. In 2021 she was named AY magazine’s Person of the Year.

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Sam Lynd Administrator and Chief Executive Officer NEA Baptist Health System 4800 East Johnson Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000

baptistonline.org/nea

Lynd joined NEA Baptist as CEO and Administrator effective April 2020. Most recently, Sam has served as Chief Operating Officer for Baptist Memorial HospitalMemphis since January 2019 and Administrator of Baptist’s emergency services system wide since 2014. He joined Baptist Memorial Health Care as a Frank S. Groner Administrative Fellow in 2011 and was an assistant administrator at two Baptist Memorial hospitals, including NEA Baptist, before becoming the Administrator and CEO of Baptist Memorial Hospital-Tipton in 2014. Lynd holds a Master of Science in health administration and an MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a Bachelor of Science in health care management from the University of Alabama. He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and serves as President Elect of the Tennessee Center for Health Workforce Development as well as a member of the Tennessee Hospital Association’s Small or Rural Hospital Executive Committee. Lynd was recently named as an honoree of the Memphis Business Journal’s Top 40 Under 40 and is a member of the Society of Fellows at the Aspen Institute.

M Jason Masingale, RN Chief Operations Officer  Arkansas Methodist Medical Center 900 West Kingshighway  Paragould, AR 72450  870-239-7894  www.myammc.org 

Masingale began his career at Arkansas Methodist Medical Center in 1997 as an Intensive Care Nurse.  He was promoted to Director of the Intensive Care Unit, GI Lab and Cardiac Cath Lab in 2008.  He served as Assistant Chief Nursing Officer, Director of Risk Management in 2012 and was most recently promoted to Chief Operations Officer in March of 2018.  He

currently serves on the Paragould Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives. Masingale is responsible for ensuring the quality of medical care meets the overall goals and mission of Arkansas Methodist Medical Center.  He monitors performance of the hospital to ensure patient safety and clinical quality.  Masingale received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Arkansas State University. 

Melissa Masingill Chief Business Development Officer CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Named chief business development officer in February 2021, Masingill has been a member of CARTI’s executive leadership team since August 2018. She specializes in healthcare advocacy and strategic communications, utilizing her skill set to improve healthcare access and clinical outcomes. In her current role, Masingill works to increase brand awareness and expand CARTI’s reach throughout the region. Before joining CARTI, Masingill served as chief public affairs officer for the Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care where she led their governmental affairs and policy development efforts. Masingill holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Paula Maxwell, RN Chief Operations Officer Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas (MANA) 3383 North MANA Court, Suite 201 Fayetteville, Arkansas 72703 479-571-6780 www.mana.md

Maxwell was instrumental in the formation of MANA in 1999. She is a registered nurse and has over 20 years of experience in the medical field. As Chief Operations Officer, she directs administrative services and human resources. She oversees physician recruitment, employee recruitment, and marketing and public relations. Maxwell’s professional associations include the Medical Group Management Association, Society for Human Resource Management, North Arkansas Human Resource Society, and American Society of Training and Development. In the community, she is

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 a Leadership Fayetteville graduate and has served on the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce and the LifeStyles board of directors.

Tina McClain, MD Chief of Staff Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 4300 West 7th Street Little Rock, AR 72205 501-257-5400

www.littlerock.va.gov

Dr. McClain was appointed Chief of Staff of Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System (CAVHS), Little Rock, effective November 13, 2016. As Chief of Staff, Dr. McClain is charged with overall management responsibility of clinical affairs including the following services: Medical, Surgical, Psychiatry, Research and Development, Radiology, Physical Medical and Rehabilitation, Neurology, Ambulatory Care, Mental Health, Dental and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. As a member of the Senior Leadership Team, Dr. McClain leads one of the most complex facilities in the VA system which includes a two-campus medical center with 280 operating hospital beds, a 152-bed Nursing Home Care Unit and a 119-bed Domiciliary, eight Community Based Outreach Clinics with an annual operating budget more than $573 million and approximately 3,000 employees. Dr. McClain graduated from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) in Little Rock and received a Medical Degree in 1993. She completed Psychiatry residency training, also at UAMS in 1997. She joined the staff at CAVHS and faculty at UAMS in 1998.

Diana McDaniel, MPA, FACMPE Vice President Arkansas Children’s Northwest 2601 Gene George Boulevard Springdale, AR 72762 479-725-6800 McdanielDA@ archildrens.org

McDaniel serves as Vice President of Arkansas Children’s Northwest, where she is responsible for oversight of the facility, business operations, and ancillary services. She recently served as president of the Arkansas Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) and is currently serving as Vice Chair of the Springdale Chamber of

32 Arkansas Medical News

Commerce. She has a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville and a Master’s in Public Administration from the Institute of Government of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Robert McGehee Jr., Ph.D. Dean, UAMS Graduate School University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5454 rem@uams.edu

McGehee has served since 2004 as dean of the Graduate School, which has more than 15 graduate programs in biomedical research. He is also a professor and director of basic science research in neonatology in the College of Medicine Department of Pediatrics. He has directed the multi-institution Arkansas Biosciences Institute since 2007. He received a Ph.D. in physiology and biophysics at UAMS and trained as a research fellow in molecular endocrinology at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts’ General Hospital.

Juli McWhorter, R.N., MSN Chief Administrative Officer Northwest Medical Center - Willow Creek Women’s Hospital 4301 Greathouse Springs Road Johnson, AR 72762 479-684-3000 www.northwest health.com

McWhorter is Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Nursing Officer for Willow Creek Women’s Hospital. She previously served as Chief Operating Officer and has been Chief Nursing Officer since 2015. She has worked with Northwest Health for approximately 30 years. Having begun her career as a charge nurse in the surgical intensive care unit, McWhorter also has experience in cardiac rehabilitation, cardiac stepdown, patient education and flight nursing. She has served in leadership positions for Northwest Health, including as chief quality officer and director of critical care services for Northwest Medical Center-Bentonville. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing from Western Governor’s

University. She is active in the community, supporting organizations including the March of Dimes and Jackson Graves Foundation.

Stephen Mette, M.D. Chief Executive Officer, UAMS Medical Center Senior Vice Chancellor, UAMS Health University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-7000 SAMette@uams.edu

Mette joined UAMS in April 2015. He was named senior vice chancellor for UAMS Health and chief executive officer for the medical center in November 2019. As CEO, Mette is responsible for the 514-bed hospital, outpatient clinics in central Arkansas, digital health clinics and clinics at regional campuses across the state. He also serves as chair of the board of directors of the Baptist Health-UAMS Accountable Care Alliance. For the past decade, he has worked to create effective health care delivery systems in rural states. Mette is a professor of internal medicine in the UAMS College of Medicine.

Kim Miller Western Region President Baptist Health 9601 Baptist Health Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-202-2000 baptist-health.com

Miller became president of the Baptist Health Western Region in April 2020. She most recently served as president and CEO of Beaver Dam Community Hospitals in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. She brings more than 40 years of health care experience along with being a registered nurse and a board-certified fellow from the American College of Healthcare Executives. Miller will oversee the system’s hospitals in Fort Smith and Van Buren as well as affiliated physician clinics. The Baptist Health Western Region has approximately 1,600 employees. She has a master’s degree in business administration from St. Francis University in Pennsylvania.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Pete Mourani, MD President Arkansas Children’s Research Institute Sr. Vice President & Chief Research Officer Arkansas Children’s 1 Children’s Way   Little Rock, AR 72202  501-364-1100  mouranip@ archildrens.org

Dr. Mourani serves as the senior vice president and chief research officer for Arkansas Children’s and president of Arkansas Children’s Research Institute (ACRI). He is the fifth president of ACRI. Additionally, he holds the Ross and Mary Whipple Family Distinguished Research Scientist Endowed Chair. Dr. Mourani also serves as the site Principal Investigator and Steering Committee member for the prestigious eight-site National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) supported Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network (CPCCRN), which performs impactful clinical research in the field of pediatric critical illness and injury.

&

He previously worked at the University of Colorado and Children’s Colorado Hospital as professor of pediatrics in the section of Critical Care Medicine. Dr. Mourani has served as the Medical Director of the Children’s Hospital Clinical Research Organization (CCRO) and most recently the Medical Director of the Children’s Hospital Colorado Research Institute.

David Muns, FACHE Chief Operating Officer CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Muns joined CARTI as chief operating officer in May 2021 after previously serving as chief operating officer at Merit Health Wesley Medical Center in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE), and previously served as president of the Mississippi Chapter of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He is a retired Air Force Master Sergeant with 23 years of service. Muns holds a Master of Public Health in health administration from

the University of Southern Mississippi, and a Bachelor of Science in human resource management from Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama.

Bruce E. Murphy, MD, PhD Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Heart Hospital 1701 South Shackleford Road Little Rock, AR 72211 501-219-7480 www.arheart.com

Dr. Murphy is Chief Executive Officer and founder of Arkansas Heart Hospital, one of America’s premiere subspecialty cardiology hospitals recognized worldwide for their exceptional standard of care, procedure volumes, management efficiencies and financial success. Born in El Dorado, Murphy graduated from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in 1980 with a PhD in pharmacology and competed his interventional cardiology training in 1986. He has had intensive interventional training experience with world-renowned cardiologists and has authored and contributed

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Arkansas Medical News 33


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 work to many medical publications. He is an invited speaker at international cardiology meetings on topics of coronary disease, peripheral vascular disease and world health.

N Creshelle R. Nash, M.D., M.P.H. Medical Director, Health Equity and Public Programs Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 601 South Gaines Little Rock, AR 72201 501-378-2000

arkansasbluecross.com

Dr. Nash, MD, provides leadership for developing, implementing, and evaluating health equity initiatives to help create a more inclusive and non-discriminatory healthcare system throughout Arkansas. She provides oversight and guidance on public programs and products to improve health equity for all Arkansans. This role includes a position on the leadership committee for the Vaccinate the Natural State initiative, a combined effort from a diverse set of organizations working to increase the adoption of COVID-19 vaccines across Arkansas and ensure equitable access and distribution. Dr. Nash also serves as a consultant for Community Engagement and Social Determinants of Health and Equity at the University of Arkansas College of Public Health. She is also the co-director of the Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities Service Learning Course. Dr. Nash completed medical school at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD, and served her residency in the Primary Care Internal Medicine Residency Training Program at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, DC. She received a Master of Public Health degree from Harvard University School of Public Health. She completed a fellowship in Minority Health Policy from Harvard University School of Public Health, also in Washington, DC.

34 Arkansas Medical News

Andrea Nelson Chief Operating Officer Arkansas Heart Hospital 1701 South Shackleford Road Little Rock, AR 72211 501-219-7300 andrea.nelson@ arheart.com

Nelson is the Chief Operating Officer for Arkansas Heart Hospital. She received her BSN from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and has a MS in Nursing Administration. During her career, she has served in a variety of roles throughout the organization. In 2002, she assisted with the development of the first freestanding cardiac cath lab in the state. She previously served as Chief Clinical Officer before transitioning to Chief Operating Officer in 2018. Nelson oversees operations at Arkansas Heart Hospital and provides clinical oversight of our clinics.

Aaron Nichols MHSA, FACMPE 2021 President Arkansas Medical Group Management Association Administrator Arkana Labs 10810 Executive Center Drive, Suite 100 Little Rock, AR 72211 aaron.nichols@ nephropath.com

Nichols currently serves as president of the Arkansas Medical Group Management Association and is Arkansas representative for the American College of Medical Practice Executives. He also serves as chief operating officer with Arkana Laboratories in Little Rock. Since joining in 2011 he has helped the practice expand beyond their industry leading renal pathology service into neuropathology, molecular pathology and clinical research. Nichols received his Master of Health Services Administration from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Fay W. Boozeman College of Public Health and is a Fellow in the American College of Medical Practice Executives.

O Thomas J. Olmstead

Senior Vice President and General Counsel Washington Regional Medical System 3215 N North Hills Blvd Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 www.wregional.com

Olmstead, who was in private practice with the Fayetteville law firm of Burke & Olmstead from 1995 to 2005, has served Washington Regional as General Counsel since 2001. He joined the Washington Regional executive team in 2005. Olmstead graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Kansas and earned his J.D. degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law, where he was an Associate Editor of the Arkansas Law Review. He is admitted to practice before all federal and state courts in the State of Arkansas, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit and is a member of the Arkansas Bar Association and the American Health Lawyers Association. 

P T. Glenn Pait, M.D. Director Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 W. Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-686-5270 PaitThomasG@ uams.edu

Pait is a professor of neurosurgery and orthopaedic surgery. He is a recognized authority in the field of spine surgery. His surgical interest focuses on surgical intervention for multiple myeloma, primary and metastatic tumors of the spine, spinal cord tumors, and degenerative disorders. His research interest focuses on anatomy of the spine and virtual reality as an anatomy tool for teaching, training and self-learning of the human body. Pait received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and obtained an M.D. from The George Washington University in Washington, DC.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Ken Pannell Chief Financial Officer North Arkansas Regional Medical Center 620 N. Main Harrison, AR 72601 870-414-4000 www.narmc.com

Pannell joined the North Arkansas Regional Medical Center (NARMC) team as the organization’s new Chief Financial Officer in July of 2019 with nearly 30 years of experience in healthcare financial management. Prior to coming to NARMC, Pannell lead the financial team at West Arizona Regional Medical Center in Bullhead City, Arizona, where he led initiatives to identify expense savings and improve productivity performance. He has also served as Chief Financial Officer for hospitals in Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma. As CFO, Pannell oversees several support teams that keep the medical system running smoothly, including Patient Financial Services, Information Services, Human Resources, Decision Support and Materials Management. 

Denten Park Market Chief Executive Officer Northwest Health 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

Park is an accomplished healthcare leader with more than 20 years of executive management experience at hospitals, nursing homes and rehabilitation centers in Arizona, Wyoming and Utah. Prior to joining Northwest Health in 2018, he served as CEO of Mountain View Regional Medical Center in Las Cruces, New Mexico where he was a founding member of The Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine as well as the president of the Las Cruces Public Schools Foundation. Park earned his master’s degree in business administration from New Mexico State University and his bachelor’s degree in business management and social business from Utah State University. He is a member of the board of directors of the Rogers/Lowell Chamber of Commerce and an ex-officio member of the Springdale Chamber of Commerce board of directors.  He is also a member of the Northwest Arkansas Council as well as an inaugural member of the Northwest Arkansas Healthcare Transformation Steering Committee. Park was a founding member of The Burrell

arkansasmedicalnews.com

College of Osteopathic Medicine as well as the president of the Las Cruces Public Schools Foundation.

Erin Parker, MBA, CHC, CHPC, CHRC Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer Arkansas Children’s, Inc. 1 Children’s Way Little Rock, AR 72202 501-364-1100 parkeree@ archildrens.org

Parker is responsible for building partnerships while leading the organization’s focus on systems security, infrastructure and digital initiatives that make healthcare more accessible and seamless for workforce, providers and patients and their caregivers. She leads a division of more than 200 team members, drawing on her experience designing and implementing compliance initiatives with the system’s electronic health record. Parker has most recently served as vice president/system compliance officer for Arkansas Children’s.

J. Matt Parker Senior Vice President of Strategy and Business Development St. Bernards Healthcare 225 East Washington Avenue Jonesboro, AR 72401 870-207-4285 mparker@sbrmc.org www.stbernards.info

Parker is responsible for identifying and evaluating strategic business opportunities on behalf of St. Bernards Healthcare. He negotiates contracts with third parties, manages acquisitions and reorganizations as well as serving on the finance, investment, retirement and recruitment committees.

Kelvin L. Parks, MA   Medical Center Director   Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks   1100 N. College Ave   Fayetteville, AR 72703   479-443-4301   www.fayettevillear. va.gov  

Parks, serves as the Medical Center Director at Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks effective November 25, 2018. In this role, he oversees and is responsible for the control and operation of this complexity level 1C healthcare system comprised of 1,500 employees, six Community Based Outpatient Clinics, and 55 thousand veterans in three states. Prior to this appointment he served as the Associate Medical Center Director at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks and the Manchester, New Hampshire VA Medical Center.   

Cam Patterson, M.D., MBA Chancellor University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences CEO UAMS Health 4301 W. Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-686-5681 chancellor@uams.edu

Patterson leads Arkansas’ only academic health sciences center, which encompasses patient care, education, research and outreach resources at locations across the state. He came to UAMS in 2018 from Weill-Cornell Medical Center and Komansky Children’s Hospital/New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York, where he was senior vice president and chief operating officer since 2014. Over the course of his career, the renowned cardiologist as principal investigator or co-investigator has received more than $60 million in grants from the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. His work has been published in 323 peer-reviewed scientific publications.

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Gary Paxson, RN, BSN, MS President & CEO White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

As the President & CEO at White River Health System, Paxson, is creating a new vision and culture for the health system. He is focused on honoring the mission to provide quality healthcare and improve the health for the residents in the system’s 10 county service area. Paxson has over 25 years of healthcare experience. He joined WRHS in 2012. His career includes positions in nursing, healthcare information systems, and executive management. Paxson earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Saint Anthony College of Nursing in Rockford, Ill., and a Master of Science in Information System Management – Healthcare Administration Concentration from Bellevue University in Bellevue, Nebraska.

Ron Peterson President, Chief Executive Officer Baxter Regional Medical Center 624 Hospital Drive Mountain Home, AR 72653 870-508-1039 www.baxter regional.org

Peterson became President and CEO of Baxter Regional Medical Center in 2007, after more than 20 years of progressive healthcare experience. Prior to joining BRMC, he worked for Regional Medical Center in Madisonville, Kentucky, for 15 years, first as Vice President and then as President. He was also Chief Operating Officer at Incarnate Word Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, and Vice President of Ancillary Services at St. Joseph Medical Center in Wichita, Kansas. Peterson earned a Master of Hospital and Health Administration from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, and a bachelor’s degree from Concordia College in Morehead, Minnesota.

Alisa PetetMcElfresh Administrator GastroArkansas Vice President of Operations The GI Alliance of Arkansas 409 N University Ave.

Little Rock, AR 72205 501-664-6980 alisa@gastro arkansas.com

Petet’s robust experience in the healthcare industry makes her uniquely qualified to be the Administrator at GastroArkansas. She graduated from the University of Arkansas Little Rock in 2007 with a degree in nursing. She has been a part of the GastroArkansas team since 2000, holding various roles throughout her tenure including Registered Nurse, Clinical Manager, Chief Operations Officer, and now Administrator of GastroArkansas and Vice President of Operations for The GI Alliance in Arkansas. As Administrator, Petet is responsible for the overall success of all four clinic locations and the three endoscopy centers including pathology and anesthesia services. Petet also speaks nationally to independent medical practices and hospital systems to provide education on the changes in the healthcare landscape and educates medical professionals on the treatment of patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. She was a nominee for the Arkansas State Board of Nursing Most Compassionate Nurse Award and was the 2016 CCFA Medical Volunteer of the Year.

Paul Phillips, M.D. Director, UAMS Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-364-1888 PhillipsPaulH@uams. edu

Phillips was appointed chair of the Department of Ophthalmology in the College of Medicine and director of the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute at UAMS in 2020. Phillips was recruited to UAMS in 1997 and has held the rank of professor since 2008. He has served as chief of pediatric ophthalmology at Arkansas Children’s since 2006 and as director of the Ophthalmology Residency Program since 2015.

36 Arkansas Medical News

Eric Pianalto President Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas 2710 Rife Medical Lane Rogers, AR 72758 479-338-8000 www.mercy.net/nwa

Pianalto was named president of Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas in 2013. A Northwest Arkansas native, he has served as a Mercy leader for 27 years, including a 10-year tenure in Northwest Arkansas along with roles in Fort Smith, Oklahoma, and Mercy’s four-state health ministry. Prior to serving as president, Pianalto served as chief operating officer of Mercy Clinic in Arkansas and Oklahoma. He attended the University of Arkansas and has a master’s degree in business administration.

Reid Pierce, MD Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Jefferson Regional Medical Center 1600 West 40th Avenue Pine Bluff, Arkansas 71603 870-541-7100 www.jrmc.org

Dr. Pierce, who grew up in Pine Bluff, established his OB/GYN practice at Jefferson Regional Medical Center in 1986. He began service in medical staff leadership as Chief of Staff in 2004 before becoming Medical Director of Credentials and Regulatory Matters in 2006. He continued in this role until 2013 when he took a staff position at Magnolia Regional Medical Center, in Magnolia, Arkansas. In 2015, he accepted an offer to return to Jefferson Regional as the Chief Medical Officer/ Vice-President of Medical Affairs. He received his medical degree from Tulane University School of Medicine and did his residency training at the University of Virginia. He is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021

Q Amir Qureshi, MD Founder Arkansas Spine and Pain 5700 West Markham Street Little Rock, AR 72205 501-227-0184 arkansasspine andpain.com

Dr. Qureshi (also known as Dr. Q) founded Arkansas Spine and Pain in 2009. Now a leader in pain management and rehabilitation in Arkansas, he attended medical school at Baqai Medical College in Karachi, Pakistan. Dr. Qureshi did his residency at UAMS in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and his fellowship training in interventional spine pain management/ orthopedic/sports medicine in Honolulu, Hawaii. He is a board member of the American Board of Interventional Pain. Dr. Qureshi has staff privileges at Arkansas Surgical Hospital, St. Vincent Infirmary, Little Rock Surgery Center, Bradley County Medical Center and Baptist Health Center. Arkansas Spine and Pain has facilities in Little Rock, Benton, Conway, Jacksonville, Searcy and White Hall.

R Charlotte Rankin Chief Operating Officer, Chief Nursing Officer Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas 2710 Rife Medical Lane Rogers, AR 72758 479-338-8000 www.mercy.net/nwa

Rankin was named chief operating officer of Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas in 2016. A native Arkansan, she assumed the COO role in addition to her role as chief nursing officer. Rankin has served as a Mercy leader for 20 years, including helping lead the development of Mercy NWA’s Heart Interventional Program. She graduated as a Diploma RN more than 20 years ago, soon after obtaining her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Northeastern State University in Oklahoma and has a master’s degree in health administration.

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Arkansas Medical News 37


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 David Ratcliff, MD Chief of Medical Affairs Washington Regional Medical System 3215 N North Hills Blvd Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000

www.wregional.com

Ratcliff has served as Washington Regional’s Chief of Medical Affairs since 2004. From 1991 until assuming the executive role, he was a practicing internal medicine physician at Fayetteville Diagnostic Clinic. He graduated with honors from Hendrix College and earned his MD at Vanderbilt University Medical School. Ratcliff completed his residency at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, where he was named chief resident. Ratcliff is board certified in internal medicine.

Trenda Ray, Ph.D., RN Chief Nursing Officer University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 W. Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-6358 RayTrendaD@ uams.edu

Ray was named chief nursing officer and associate vice chancellor for patient care services for UAMS Health in 2019. She is responsible for ensuring quality nursing care and has executive oversight for the hospital’s nursing units, respiratory care, international services and pastoral care. She also is responsible for the care management team, including hospital and outpatient services, the inpatient psychiatric social work team, and community health advocates. Ray joined UAMS in 2011 as the ambulatory operations officer and director of ambulatory nursing.

James Reed Chief Information Officer Conway Regional Health System 2302 College Avenue Conway, AR 72034 501-329-3831 www.conway regional.org

As Chief Information Officer, Reed is responsible for the information system operations of the health system. In addition, Reed provides executive oversight of the Pharmacy, Imaging, Laboratory, and Quality Departments and serves as Conway Regional’s Corporate Compliance Officer. Reed has more than 18 years of experience in healthcare and leadership. He holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.  He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives as well as a member of the Arkansas Pharmacy Association.  He has served on the board of directors for the Arkansas Association of Health-system Pharmacists and was recently recognized in 2019 as Administrator of the Year for the North Metro Healthcare Region by the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce.

Jeff Reifsteck Vice President and Chief Information Officer White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

Reifsteck oversees Information Systems at White River Health System. He began his career at WRHS in May of 2015 as Director of Information Systems. He received his Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and his Master of Healthcare Administration from Colorado State University. In April 2019, Reifsteck moved into his administrative role.

Maurice Rigsby Vice Chancellor for Institutional Relations University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-6305 MRigsby@uams.edu

Rigsby was appointed vice chancellor for institutional relations in 2017. He came to UAMS in 2014 as a government relations liaison and was later promoted to assistant vice chancellor. Prior to coming to UAMS, Rigsby was the senior assistant attorney general for legislative affairs with the Arkansas attorney general’s office, where he managed the attorney general’s policy agenda while working with members of the state Legislature and the governor’s office. Rigsby graduated from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville School of Law in 2003.

Jacob Robinson Chief Administrative Officer Arkansas Heart Hospital - Encore 1901 Encore Way Bryant, AR 72019 501-213-4500 Jacob.robinson@ arheart.com

Robinson joined Arkansas Heart Hospital in 2018 as its Chief Administrative Officer. During his career, Robinson has worked in various roles with Baptist Health including starting as an Administrative Fellow in Little Rock and transitioning to the leadership team that opened and operationalized the BHMC Conway Hospital as an Assistant Vice President and Assistant Administrator. He is a native Arkansans and a graduate of the University of Central Arkansas and UAMS.

José R. Romero, MD Secretary of Health Arkansas Department of Health 4815 W. Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-280-4663 www.healthy. arkansas.gov

Dr. Romero was named the Secretary of the Arkansas Department of Health in August 2020. He is a member of the Gover-

38 Arkansas Medical News


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 nor’s cabinet and provides senior scientific and executive leadership for the agency. Dr. Romero is currently the chairman of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which is providing guidance nationally on the prioritization and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Romero previously served as Chief Medical Officer at the ADH and was appointed as the interim Secretary of Health by Governor Asa Hutchinson in May 2020. He was Director of the Section of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) and the Arkansas Children’s Hospital from 2008-2020. He is also a Professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at UAMS and has board-certification in Pediatrics and Pediatric Infectious Diseases. Dr. Romero’s research interests include the molecular pathogenesis, epidemiology, and diagnosis of enteroviral infections, clinical and therapeutic aspects of enterovirus, herpes virus, cytomegalovirus, pediatric tuberculosis, and pneumococcal infections.

Douglas Ross, MD President & Chief Medical Officer CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs & CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, 72205 501-552-3000 chistvincent.com

Dr. Ross serves as president for CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs and chief medical officer for the CHI St. Vincent hospitals. He previously was vice president of medical affairs for CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs. He joined that hospital in 2003 as an emergency medicine physician. He has also served as chief of staff, medical director of informatics and medical director of the emergency department at CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs. Ross is board certified in emergency medicine and is a graduate of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. He serves on the board of directors for the Encompass Health / CHI St. Vincent Rehab Partnership and Hot Springs Metro Partnership as well as the Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Executive Committee.

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Robert “Bo” Ryall President & Chief Executive Officer Arkansas Hospital Association 419 Natural Resources Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-224-7878 boryall@ arkhospitals.org

Ryall is president and CEO of the Arkansas Hospital Association. He has been with the Association since 2005 and was named president in 2010. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Bo also served as the chief lobbyist on the state level for Arkansas hospitals and was previously executive director of the HomeCare Association of Arkansas. Bo was most recently appointed to Governor Asa Hutchinson’s COVID-19 Winter Task Force. He currently serves on the Future of Medicaid Work Group, and the State Issues Forum Steering Committee, both of the American Hospital Association. He serves as chairman of the Health Care Providers Forum, is a member of the Health Care Industry Council of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, is an Arkansas Regional Organ Recovery Agency board member, and is a past-president of the Arkansas Society of Association Executives.

Derek Rudkin, CAE Executive Director Pulaski County Medical Society 500 South University, Suite 311 Little Rock, AR 72205 501-687-0039 derek@ pulaskicms.org

Rudkin has been with the Pulaski County Medical Society (PCMS) since 2012. His responsibilities not only include managing the PCMS, founded in 1866 and the oldest trade association in Arkansas, but also the Pulaski County Medical Exchange, and the PCMS Healing the Healer Foundation. The organization currently has 1,600 members. The PCMS Healing the Healer Foundation which was created to serve the mental health needs of physicians in central Arkansas. 

S Kyle Sanders Chief Financial Officer NEA Baptist Health System 4800 East Johnson Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000 www.baptistonline. org/nea

Sanders has worked at NEA Baptist since 2007 as Controller before being promoted to the position of CFO. As CFO of NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital, Sanders is responsible for several departments, including patient financial services, patient access, health information management, case management, and accounting. He also oversees the hospital’s financial planning and budgeting processes. In addition, Sanders serves as the hospital’s Chief Privacy and Security Officer. Sanders is a graduate of Arkansas State University in Jonesboro with a BS in finance and a master’s degree in business administration. He is a member of the Healthcare Financial Management Association and is a Certified Healthcare Financial Professional.

Joseph Sanford, M.D. Director, UAMS Institute for Digital Health & Innovation University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-526-5001

JASanford@uams.edu

Sanford was named director of the Institute for Digital Health & Innovation in 2021. Sanford has been on the forefront of digital health and clinical informatics initiatives for UAMS and Arkansas in recent years. He received his medical degree and completed his anesthesiology residency at UAMS, followed by a fellowship in management of perioperative services at Stanford University School of Medicine. Sanford joined the UAMS faculty as an assistant professor in 2015 and has served as an associate professor of anesthesiology and biomedical informatics since 2019. He is the UAMS fellowship site director for the clinical informatics fellowship based at UAMS and Arkansas Children’s.

Arkansas Medical News 39


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Fred Scarborough, CFRE Executive Vice President/Chief Communications and Development Officer Arkansas Children’s, Inc. 1 Children’s Way Little Rock, Arkansas 72202  501-364-1100  ScarboroughF@ archildrens.org

Scarborough oversees Strategic Marketing, Communications and Volunteer Engagement and serves as president of Arkansas Children’s Foundation (ACF). A member of the fundraising profession since 1995, he has achieved an uncommon level of success among his fundraising peers and has helped to secure more than $400 million for the organizations he has served.

Stephanie Schmittou Chief Nursing Officer Magnolia Regional Medical Center 101 Hospital Drive Magnolia AR  71753 870-235-3000 magnoliarmc.org

Schmittou has been the Chief Nursing Officer at Magnolia Regional Medical Center since 2017. She has been employed at MRMC for 20 years. She obtained her Associates degree in nursing in 2000 from Southern Arkansas University and has worked many roles as a nurse but her favorite is working in the emergency nurse role. She is a strong advocate of nurses pursuing higher education and has done so by completing her BSN in 2006 at Southern Arkansas University and her MSN in 2017 at Walden University. She is a board member of the Arkansas Organization Nurses Leaders and a member of American Organization of Nurse Leaders.

Chief Nursing Officer since 2009. Previously, he served as the Interstate Compact Coordinator for Arkansas and Utilization Review Director at ASH from 2006-2009. Scoggins began his career in healthcare in 1996 as a critical care registered nurse at St. Vincent’s Medical Hospital in Little Rock. He returned to school and earned his Juris Doctor from the William H. Bowen School of Law in 2003 and then worked for the Law Offices of Gary Green for a year before entering hospital administration with Correctional Medical Services in St. Louis, Missouri. He was a guest lecturer at Harding University/Arkansas State Nurses Spring Symposium 2014, an InterRAI Expert Panelist for Adult and Children’s Psyche 2014 and a guest lecturer at Professional’s in Psychiatric Nursing (PiPN) Fall Conference 2015. Scoggins completed Six Sigma Green Belt training in 2018.

Margie A. Scott, MD Medical Center Director Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 4300 West 7th Street Little Rock, AR 72205 501- 257-5400

www.littlerock.va.gov

Scott was appointed Medical Center Director of the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System effective May 1, 2016. Scott has direct line responsibility and full accountability for managing all activities, including a two-campus medical center, a Nursing Home Care Unit, a 119-bed Domiciliary, and eight Community Based Outpatient Clinics. She sets policy for the $573 million budget and more than 3,000 employees. Scott graduated from Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee, receiving her medical degree in 1988. She completed Anatomic and Clinical Pathology residency; fellowship training in Surgical Pathology; and fellowship training in Molecular Pathology at Vanderbilt University. After serving as faculty and clinical James M. Scoggins laboratory director at Vanderbilt for five Chief Executive years, she served full time at CAVHS as Officer Laboratory Director, Assistant Chief of Arkansas State Pathology & Laboratory Medicine Service, Hospital Chief of PL&M Service, Deputy Chief 305 S. Palm St. of Staff, Chief of Staff, Interim Medical Little Rock, AR Center Director, and VISN 16 Interim Chief Medical Officer. Scott is a graduate of the 72205 Health Care Leadership Institute (HCLI) 501-686-9000                                  Class of 2007. She is a tenured Professor james.scoggins@ of Pathology at University of Arkansas arkansas.gov Medical Sciences and is active in resident Scoggins was named Chief Executive Offieducation. cer for the Arkansas State Hospital in 2019.  Prior to being named CEO, Scoggins was

40 Arkansas Medical News

Jennifer Selig, CFRE Executive Director, CARTI Foundation CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

As executive director of the CARTI Foundation, Selig is responsible for all development and strategic planning aspects of cultivating major philanthropic support for CARTI. Selig joined the CARTI Foundation in July 2018 with responsibility for the Annual Gifts, Special Events and Volunteers, and Gift Shop teams. A Certified Fundraising Executive, Jennifer has more than 22 years of fundraising and development experience. During more than 18 years with Arkansas Children’s, she served as Executive Director in the Foundation, where she led the Annual Events and Volunteers team, and served as Executive Director of Volunteers for both Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Arkansas Children’s Northwest, including oversight of the gift shops at both locations as well. Selig received her bachelor’s degree in Communications from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech).

J. Larry Shackelford, CPA (inactive), FACMPE President and CEO Washington Regional Medical System 3215 N North Hills Blvd Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 wregional.com

Shackelford was named Washington Regional President and CEO in 2017 after serving as Senior Vice President – Strategy and Outreach Services since 2010. Previously he was CEO at Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas, a multispecialty physician group practice, since its inception in 1998. He graduated from the University of Arkansas in 1986 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and worked for the accounting firm Baird, Kurtz and Dobson before entering healthcare administration at Fayetteville Diagnostic Clinic. He is an inactive Certified Public Accountant and fellow in the American College of Medical Practice Executives. Shackelford currently serves as a state delegate to the Regional Policy Board of the American Hospital Association, board member of Healthy Active Arkansas,


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 board member of the Arkansas Hospital Association and Dean’s Executive Advisory Board member at the Walton School of Business at the University of Arkansas. He has previously served as treasurer and president of Arkansas Medical Group Management Association, treasurer for Susan G. Komen-Ozark Affiliate, board member for Arkansas Community Foundation and on the United Way Audit Committee.

Greg Sharp, MD Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer Arkansas Children’s Hospital  1 Children’s Way  Little Rock, AR 72202  501-364-1100 

Special Competence in Child Neurology and Added Qualification in Clinical Neurophysiology and Epilepsy. He also holds the Harvey and Bernice Jones Distinguished Chair in Pediatric Medicine. He earned his medical degree at UAMS, completed his residency in Pediatrics at UAMS and ACH, and completed a residency/fellowship in Child Neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. with specialized training in clinical neurophysiology.  

John Sharp Market Chief Financial Officer Northwest Health 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

sharpg@ archildrens.org  

In addition to serving as Senior Vice President/Chief Medical Officer of Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Sharp also serves as a professor of Pediatrics and Neurology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) College of Medicine. Sharp has been board-certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with

Sharp is the market chief financial officer for Northwest Health. He came to Northwest Health in 2019 from Laredo Medical Center, where he had served as CFO since 2014. With more than 20 years of financial leadership experience, Sharp previously served as CFO for Seton Medical Center Harker Heights in Harker Heights, Texas; St. Mary’s Health System in Waterbury, Connecticut;

and Brownwood Regional Medical Center in Brownwood, Texas. Prior experience includes work as a controller, senior staff accountant and staff accountant. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration, focusing on accounting and finance, from Howard Payne University in Brownwood, Texas.

Bruce Shepard Executive Director Community Quality Alliance 601 West Maple Ave. Springdale, AR 72764 www.northwest health.com/ northwestcommunity-qualityalliance

Shepard is executive director of the Community Quality Alliance, a clinically integrated network (CIN) affiliated with Northwest Health. Founded in 2016, the Community Quality Alliance was one of Arkansas’ first clinically integrated networks. In 2018, the organization launched a Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organization (ACO), Community Health Alliance of the Ozarks. Shepard oversees both

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Arkansas Medical News 41


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 organizations. Prior to joining Northwest Health in 2016, Shepard was vice president of product strategy and implementation for Savvysherpa, Inc, where he built innovative solutions to lowering health care costs. Before that he was director of health and wellness innovations for Walmart. His experiences also include serving as a CEO for Dorminy Medical Center and Clinch Memorial Hospital, both in Georgia. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Georgia Southern University and a master’s degree in business administration from Georgia College & State University. He has also earned national certification as a Healthcare Consumerism Specialist.

H. Scott Smith, JD Director of Governmental Affairs Arkansas Medical Society 10 Corporate Hill Drive, Suite 300 Little Rock, AR 72205 501-224-8967 www.arkmed.org

Smith is from Fort Smith. He graduated from the University of Arkansas School of Law in Fayetteville in 1991. Smith then served as law clerk to U.S. District Court Judge Jon McCalla and then clerked for Chief U.S. District Court Judge Odell Horton in Memphis. Later, he was appointed Deputy General Counsel and Legislative Liaison for the Tennessee Department of Health by Tennessee Governor Don Sundquist. In 1997, he began serving as Director of Governmental Affairs for the Tennessee Medical Association in Nashville. Smith assumed his current position in 2004, after leading Tennessee Medical Association’s lobbying efforts for seven sessions.

Joseph Smotherman Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

Smotherman serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at White River Health System, and Chief Operating Officer at Stone County Medical Center (SCMC). Smotherman assists with the Graduate Medical Education (GME) Program in addition to Community Engagement, Marketing, WRHS Volunteer Services/Chaplain, and operating at SCMC. Smotherman joined WRHS in June 2003.

42 Arkansas Medical News

Smotherman has served in multiple leadership roles at WRMC including Assistant Director of Pharmacy in 2005, Director of Pharmacy in 2006, Director of Quality and Case Management in 2010, Hospital Medicine Program Director in 2014, and Associate Administrator of GME in 2016. He did his undergraduate studies in Chemistry/ Pre-pharmacy at Lyon College, earned a Doctor of Pharmacy from UAMS, and a Master of Divinity in Biblical Studies from Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary.

Susan Smyth, M.D., Ph.D. Dean UAMS College of Medicine Executive Vice Chancellor University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 W. Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5150 SmythSusan@ uams.edu

Smyth began her tenure as dean of the UAMS College of Medicine in June 2021. As dean, Smyth oversees all aspects of the College of Medicine, the largest college at UAMS with 682 students, 30 departments and free-standing divisions, more than 1,100 faculty members, a professional practice group and 650 residents and fellows. Before she started at UAMS, Smyth was chief of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and the director of the Gill Heart and Vascular Institute at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. A nationally known cardiologist and translational scientist, Smyth is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation, immediate past-president of the Association of University Cardiologists and has served on the CTSA Steering Committee for the National Center for Advancing Translational Science.

Frank Snell, CPO, FAAOP President/Chief Executive Officer Snell Prosthetics & Orthotics 625 North University Avenue Little Rock, AR 72205 501-664-2624 fsnell@snell arkansas.com

Snell, who has led the 110-year-old prosthetics and orthotics company since 1984, will celebrate his fiftieth year in the profession in 2022. He has directed the expansion of the company from a single office in Little Rock, to its current size of ten facilities located throughout the state of Arkansas. Board certified and licensed in both prosthetics and orthotics, he was one of the first in the country to be granted fellow status in the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists. Snell has served as a Prosthetic-Orthotic Examiner for the American Board for Certification, is a Founding Member of the Arkansas State Orthotic and Prosthetic Association and is the current Chairman of AOPA’s Veterans Affairs Task Force. He is a graduate of Northwestern University’s ProstheticOrthotic Program.

Scott Stern, M.D. Head and Neck Oncologic Surgeon Chief Medical Director Medical Director, Surgical Oncology CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

A member of CARTI’s medical team since 2011, Dr. Stern was named medical director of surgical oncology in 2017 and assumed the role of chief medical director in September 2020. Dr. Stern specializes in surgical oncology of the head and neck and has been in practice for nearly 30 years. After graduating from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Dr. Stern completed a residency in otolaryngology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, and then went on to complete a fellowship for head and neck oncologic surgery at MD Anderson in Houston, Texas. He is board certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Michael Stewart Chief Executive Officer Saline Memorial Hospital 1 Medical Park Drive Benton, AR 72015 501-776-6000 www.saline memorial.org

Stewart assumed the role as Chief Executive Officer at Saline Health System in Benton, Arkansas on November 30, 2018. He has 18 years of healthcare leadership experience. Stewart came to Saline Health System from Navarro Regional Hospital in Texas, where he served as CEO. Prior to his time at Navarro Regional, he spent several years as an administrator for Northwest Health System in Springdale, Arkansas and CEO of Barstow Community Hospital in California. Before becoming an executive in healthcare, Stewart rose to the rank of Captain in the United States Airforce. He received his MBA from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin and his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M in College Station, Texas.

Paula Storment, CPA, CMPE Vice President of Clinic Operations Washington Regional Medical Center 3215 N North Hills Blvd. Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 wregional.com

Storment joined Washington Regional as Vice President of Clinic Operations, where she oversees the physician enterprise, in 2019. She previously served as Chief Financial Officer at MANA for nine years. Storment earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Arkansas and previously served as a legislative liaison on the boards for JDRF and Arkansas MGMA.

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Cindy Stowe, Pharm.D. Dean, UAMS College of Pharmacy University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-6139 CStowe@uams.edu

Stowe was named dean of the UAMS College of Pharmacy in 2019. She oversees all aspects of the college. Stowe was on the UAMS faculty for nearly 20 years, from 1995-2014. In 2014, she was named dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at Sullivan University in Louisville, Kentucky. She also served as that university’s associate provost since 2018. Stowe earned her Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1991 from the University of Kentucky, where she previously earned a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy.

Scott Street   Chief Executive Officer Medical Center of South Arkansas 700 West Grove Street El Dorado, AR 71730 870-863-3290  www.themed center.net

Street has served in healthcare leadership roles for over 30 years. Street is a graduate of the University of Missouri, Columbia, MO earning a Master of Healthcare Administration and graduated from Ouachita Baptist University, Arkadelphia, AR with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration. Street is currently leading Medical Center of South Arkansas in a multi-million-dollar renovation and expansion project including second, third, and fourth floor patient rooms, new café, bistro, lobby, conference center, ICU, behavioral health unit, three level medical office building, new medical service lines and additional physician specialties. Alliances with Arkansas Heart Hospital, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, UAMS, and Survival Flight have been established. He currently serves on Governor Asa Hutchinson’s COVID-19 Task Force; Board of Directors and the School of Business Advisory Board at Ouachita Baptist University; SHARP Bancshares Board of Directors; Bank of Cave City Board of Directors; Arkansas Rural Health Partnership Board Member and locally serves on the

El Dorado Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors; South Arkansas Community College Board of Trustees; South Arkansas Community College Foundation Board of Directors.

Jennifer Styron Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Named executive vice president and chief financial officer in July 2020, Styron has been a member of CARTI’s executive leadership team as CFO since 2018. She leads an exceptionally innovative finance team that includes business intelligence, revenue cycle, patient advocacy, health information management, accounting and supply chain leaders. Styron has extensive banking, finance and strategy experience and an accounting degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

T Brian Taylor Chief Information Officer CARTI 8901 CARTI Way Little Rock, AR 72205 501.906.3000 CARTI.com

Taylor joined CARTI in 2018 as chief information officer. He is a highly skilled IT leader with experience in developing strategic initiatives that align business needs with existing and emerging technologies. His more than 20 years of experience in IT has included positions at Edafio Technology Partners, IBM, Accenture and Acxiom, among others. Taylor received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Arkansas.

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InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Danna Taylor Chief Quality Officer Medical Center of South Arkansas 700 West Grove Street El Dorado, AR 71730 870-864-5482 www.themed center.net

Taylor brings with her a decade of experience in the healthcare industry. Taylor previously served as Vice President of Operations at Medical Center of South Arkansas (MCSA), where she managed ancillary services, physician clinic operations, recruitment, and strategic initiatives. As Chief Quality Officer, Taylor serves a key role in ensuring that MCSA delivers the highest-quality care to our patients and community. Taylor oversees administrative duties and departments of quality, patient safety, risk management, infection control, accreditation surveys, and will continue to direct physician clinic operations. Taylor is a graduate of Westside Christian School in El Dorado, holds a Bachelor’s in Biology from Ouachita Baptist University and a Master’s in Healthcare Administration from Trinity University.

Leslie W. Taylor Vice Chancellor, Communications & Marketing University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock, AR 72205 501-686-8998 leslie@uams.edu

Taylor oversees UAMS’ external and internal communications, marketing, advertising and media relations. She serves as official UAMS spokesperson and is the primary contact for national media and for data requests made under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act. Taylor has more than 30 years of communications and marketing management experience and previously served as vice president of corporate communications at ALLTEL and vice president of communications and marketing at CARTI.

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Stephanie Taylor BS-Mgmt., RN Associate Administrator NEA Baptist Health System 4800 E. Johnson Ave. Jonesboro, AR 72405 870-936-1000 www.baptistonline. org/nea

Taylor is a 25-year employee of the NEA Baptist Health System. She started her nursing career in 1996 as an emergency room nurse. Stephanie has worked in various leadership roles within the organization including Emergency Services Coordinator, Staff Development Manager, and Administrative Director of Quality and has now taken the role of Associate Administrator. Her responsibilities in this role include Graduate Medical Education, Case Management, Hospitalist, Environmental Services, Food and Nutrition, Medical Staff Credentialing, Auxiliary Volunteer Services and the Quality Department which consists of Risk Management, Infection Prevention, Palliative Care, and Performance Improvement. Stephanie received The Outstanding Nurse Educator Award from ARNA in 2006, is a member of Leadership Jonesboro Chamber of Commerce, is a partner with the ASU Women’s Business Leadership Group and served on the Steering Committee for the build of the new NEA Baptist Medical Campus.

Sharon Theriot Business Development Executive SVMIC White Hall, Arkansas 870-540-9161 sharon.theriot@ svmic.com

Theriot joined SVMIC in 2011 and is responsible for business development efforts in Arkansas. She has an extensive background in the healthcare and medical professional liability insurance industries.  Theriot has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Nicholls State University and over 25 years of experience working with Arkansas physicians, medical practices and hospitals.

Brian Thomas President, Chief Executive Officer Jefferson Regional Medical Center 1600 West 40th Avenue Pine Bluff, AR 71603 870-541-7100 www.jrmc.org

Thomas first joined Jefferson Regional in 1998, as Director of Physician Practices and Operations Support. He went on to serve as Chief Executive Officer at Howard Memorial Hospital in Nashville, Arkansas, Chief Operating Officer at J.F.K. Memorial Hospital in Indio, California and later at Crestwood Medical Center in Huntsville, Alabama before returning to Jefferson Regional in 2010 as Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. He was named President & CEO in February of 2017. Thomas holds a master’s degree in both Health Administration and Business Administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Kim Thompson, CPA, CHFP Chief Financial Officer  Arkansas Methodist Medical Center 900 West Kingshighway   Paragould, AR 72450  870-239-7102  www.myammc.org 

Thompson started at Arkansas Methodist Medical Center in March 2021. Prior to coming to Arkansas Methodist Medical Center, Thompson was Interim Chief Financial Officer at Morris Hospital in Morris, Illinois, and Vice President Finance and Chief Financial Officer at Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains, Missouri.  She also worked at White River Medical Center in Batesville, Arkansas, and Anadarko Petroleum Corporation in Houston, Texas.  She currently serves as Board Chair of New Beginnings Pregnancy Help Center.  She previously served on the Missouri Hospital Association FRA Subcommittee, is a member of HFMA and served on the Missouri HFMA Chapter board.  Thompson oversees all finance related aspects of the medical center, the Foundation, physician clinics and Chateau on the Ridge.  Thompson received a B.B.A. in Accounting from Delta State University and a Master of Professional Accountancy from Mississippi State University.  She is a Certified Public Accountant.   


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Amy Triplet, MNSc RN Chief Nursing Officer Medical Center of South Arkansas 700 West Grove Street El Dorado, AR 71730 870-864-3269 www.themed center.net

Originally from Stephens, Arkansas, Triplet attended Southern Arkansas University graduating with a Bachelor of Science in biology. She received her nursing education at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in nursing and a Master of Nursing Science as a geriatric nurse practitioner. Triplet has been employed at the Medical Center of South Arkansas since 1997, serving in many capacities including staff nurse, charge nurse, rehab admissions coordinator, director of health education, director of CVICU, director of one day surgery/infusion therapy, assistant chief nursing officer, and CNO since 2017. She is a member of American Nurses Association and American Organization of Nurse Executives.

Jodiane Tritt, JD Executive Vice President Arkansas Hospital Association 419 Natural Resources Drive Little Rock AR 72205 501-224-7878

jtritt@arkhospitals.org

Tritt joined the AHA executive team as Vice President of Government Relations in 2010 and, in 2018, took on the role of Executive Vice President of the association. Tritt represents the AHA in all state legislative and regulatory activities. Prior to joining the AHA staff, Tritt most recently served as Executive Director of the Center for Clinical and Translational Research (now known as the Translation Research Institute at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences). Prior to that position, she was Director of Community Support for the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH). In her work at ADH, she played an integral role in public health policy development and was responsible for the agency’s legislative agenda. Tritt is Past-President of the Arkansas Society of Association Executives, Past-President of the Arkansas Society of Professional Lobbyists, a member of the South Central Telehealth Resource Center Advisory Council, and on the Advisory

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Board of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Public Health. She is also a past chair of the State Association of Government Relations Officials for the American Hospital Association. She is a graduate of Hendrix College and holds a JD from William H. Bowen School of Law.

Matt Troup, FACHE President and Chief Executive Officer Conway Regional Health System 2302 College Avenue Conway, AR 72034 501-329-3831 www.conway regional.org

Troup is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Conway Regional Health System. He previously served as CHI St. Vincent’s Vice President, Ancillary and Support Services. He has more than 20 years of health care leadership experience, serving in senior management positions in Little Rock, Tulsa, Dallas and Melbourne, Florida. Troup has a BA in Business Administration from Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.  He completed a Master of Science, Healthcare Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio. He is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and has a Six Sigma Green Belt. 

Sarah Tucker Chief Nursing Officer Bradley County Medical Center 404 South Bradley Street Warren, AR 71671 870-226-4304 www.bradleycounty medicalcenter.com

Tucker was named the Chief Nursing Officer for Bradley County Medical Center in May 2017. As CNO, she is responsible for clinical oversight for nursing practice throughout the medical center and for business and administrative functions related to the nursing departments. She began her career in healthcare in 1991 just before earning her degree in nursing from the University of Arkansas at Monticello in 1992. Tucker has served in healthcare including charge nurse, house supervisor, case manager, director of nursing and chief clinical officer. She has also worked in hospice and long-term care.

Richard M. Tyler, JD, SPHR   Chief Human Resources Officer   Conway Regional Foundation   2302 College Avenue  Conway, AR 72034  501-329-3831  www.conway regional.org 

As Chief Human Resources Officer, Tyler is responsible for human resources, employee engagement, and education and training functions for Conway Regional Health System. Tyler has 38 years of Human Resources experience including over 28 years in Human Resources management in healthcare, banking, and state government and 28 years as an attorney focused on employment law.  Tyler has a Bachelor of Arts Political Science from Hendrix College, a Master of Public Administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and a Juris Doctor of Law from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock School of Law and is a licensed attorney in the State of Arkansas.  He is a member and past president and current board member of the Arkansas Healthcare Human Resources Association, member of American Society for Healthcare Human Resources Administration, member and past president and current board member of the Arkansas Industry Liaison Group, member of the Society for Human Resources Management, and member of the Arkansas Bar and certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources.  

V Nicole Vaccarella Vice President & General Counsel Baxter Regional Medical Center 624 Hospital Drive Mountain Home, AR 72653 870-508-1006 www.baxter regional.org

Vaccarella has served as Vice President and General Counsel for Baxter Regional Medical Center since 2000. Vaccarella oversees legal affairs, corporate compliance, and risk management. She also works closely with the BRMC Board of Directors and medical staff regarding governance issues. She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas and her Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Arkansas Medical News 45


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Al Velotta Chief Nursing Officer Northwest Medical Center – Springdale 609 West Maple Avenue Springdale, AR 72764 479-751-5711 www.northwest health.com

Velotta is the chief nursing officer for Northwest Medical Center – Springdale. He came to Northwest Health from Byrd Regional Hospital, where he served as chief clinical officer.  With more than 15 years of clinical leadership experience, Velotta previously served as client services vice president for Schumacher Clinical Partners in Lafayette, Louisiana; regional vice president—clinical operations for CHRISTUS St. Frances Cabrini Hospital in Alexandria, Louisiana; and vice president & chief nursing officer for Rapides Regional Medical Center in Alexandria, Louisiana. Prior experience includes work as a director of clinical services, executive healthcare consultant and management coordinator.  Velotta earned a master’s and bachelor’s degree in nursing from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. 

W James L. Warren, MBA, FACHE Assistant Medical Center Director   Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks   1100 N. College Ave  Fayetteville, AR 72703  479-443-4301   www.fayettevillear. va.gov  

Warren was appointed the assistant medical center director at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks in April 2021. Mr. Warren served honorably in the United States Army as an Armor Crewman with 25 years devoted to the Veteran Administration Service. He served as Acting Assistant/Associate Director in addition to the Business Office Chief for both the Memphis, Tennessee and Boston, Massachusetts VA Healthcare Systems, Medical Administrative Officer for the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in Savannah, Georgia, and Operations Manager for Radiology at the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois. He is originally from Chicago, Illinois where he obtained

46 Arkansas Medical News

his Associates Degree in Radiology and Bachelor of Arts, Business, and Technology. He obtained a master’s degree in in Business Administration with Health Administrative focus, then distinguished himself with a Fellows American College of Healthcare Executives Certification.  

Brian Wayne, MD President Pulaski County Medical Society  Physician  Little Rock Dermatology Clinic 500 South University Ste 301 Little Rock AR  72205  501-664-4161

littlerock dermatology.com Dr. Wayne is serving as the 2021 President of the Pulaski County Medical Society. He is a native Arkansan from Imboden, Arkansas, and attended Hendrix College and graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Biology. His medical school education and dermatology residency were completed at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock.  Dr. Wayne is a board-certified dermatologist specializing in general medical and cosmetic dermatology.

Steven Webb President, Chief Executive Officer    Unity Health   3214 East Race Ave.   Searcy, AR 72143   501-380-1003   steve.webb@unityhealth.org  

Unity Health in Searcy, Arkansas looks to Steven Webb as the President/CEO. Following his undergraduate degree, Webb chose to pursue a master’s in health services administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. After graduation, he served as a fellow at Unity Health (formerly White County Medical Center) and later became a Fellow in the American College of Health Care Executives. His professional career has seen exponential growth and a rapid rise, which can only be attributed to his servant leadership and ability to understand the needs of the organization he leads.  

Doug Weeks Executive Vice President & Chief of Strategy and Innovation Baptist Health 9601 Baptist Health Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-202-2000 baptist-health.com

Weeks, who previously served as Baptist Health’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, became executive vice president and chief of strategy and innovation in March 2019. In the newly created position, he is responsible for overall system strategy deployment, and continues to lead all of Baptist Health’s partnership and collaborative efforts across the state. Prior to that, Weeks was senior vice president of hospital operations and was the senior vice president and administrator of the system’s flagship hospital, Baptist Health Medical Center-Little Rock. Weeks has been with Baptist Health since 1988 and is past chairman of the Arkansas Hospital Association. Weeks earned a master’s degree in healthcare administration from Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana, and a bachelor’s degree from Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, Louisiana.

Jeanne Wei, M.D., Ph.D. Director, UAMS Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging Chairperson, Department of Geriatrics University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5996 WeiJeanne@uams.edu

Wei is a professor and chair of the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging at UAMS. The institute meets the needs of aging Arkansans with the highest standards of service, research and care available. Wei is a board-certified cardiologist, internist and geriatrician. She is well-published and recognized for her work in the field of aging. Wei received her M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois.


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Troy Wells President, Chief Executive Officer Baptist Health 9601 Baptist Health Drive Little Rock, AR 72205 501-202-2000

baptist-health.com

Wells has been president and CEO of Baptist Health since June 2014. Prior to that, he served as senior vice president of administrative services for the Baptist Health system. Wells also previously served as CEO of the Arkansas Health Group and vice president of Practice Plus, which are divisions of Baptist Health that specialize in physician staffing within the system and the management of affiliated physician clinics. Wells earned a master’s degree in health-services administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and received a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville.

Brian Welton Administrator and CEO Baptist Memorial Hospital – Crittenden 2100 North 7th Street West Memphis, AR 72301 870-394-7800 www.baptistonline. org/locations/ crittenden

Welton began leading Baptist Memorial Hospital – Crittenden in October of 2017 and is responsible for overall executive management of the hospital. Welton came to Baptist as a Frank S. Groner Administrative Fellow and served as associate administrator at Baptist Golden Triangle, as well as operations director for Baptist Medical Group. He holds a master’s degree in both Health Administration and Business Administration, and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.

arkansasmedicalnews.com

Amy Wenger, MHSA Vice Chancellor for Regional Campuses University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham Little Rock AR 72205 501-686-5264 ADWenger@uams.edu

Wenger is the vice chancellor for Regional Campuses. She directs the UAMS network of eight campuses statewide that provides education of family medicine residents and continuing education for health care professionals while increasing access to health care and health education in rural communities. Wenger previously served as the UAMS chancellor’s chief of staff and as an administrator of the Women and Infant Health Service Line and the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the College of Medicine. Wenger received a master’s in health services administration in 2004 and completed a postgraduate fellowship at Vanderbilt Medical Group in Nashville, Tennessee.

Danny Wilkerson, MD 2021-2022 President Arkansas Medical Society 10 Corporate Hill Drive, Suite 300 Little Rock, AR 72205 501-224-8967 www.arkmed.org

Little Rock anesthesiologist Danny Wilkerson, MD, will serve as the 2021-2022 President of the Arkansas Medical Society. Dr. Wilkerson has been a member of the Society for over 30 years and has been chairman of the AMS Board of Trustees for three years. Dr. Wilkerson has been at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences since 2000 as Professor of Anesthesiology and is currently the Practicing Anesthesiologist in the UAMS Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic. He is also vice chairman and chairman-elect of the Board of Trustees of the Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care and president of the Arkansas Medical Foundation Board of Trustees.

Bryan Williams Chief Nurse Executive CHI St. Vincent 2 St. Vincent Circle Little Rock, AR 72205 501-552-3000

www.chistvincent.com Williams was appointed chief nurse executive for the CHI St. Vincent system in January 2020, previously serving as vice president for Patient Care Services; chief nursing officer for CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs and CHI St. Vincent North; and executive director of nursing at the Infirmary. Williams began his career as a staff nurse at CHI St. Vincent before going on to serve in various roles at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Baptist Health in Birmingham, CHRISTUS Health in Corpus Christi and Community Health Systems in the greater Nashville area. He earned his Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nursing Administration from the University of South Alabama, his Master of Science in Nursing at Stanford University and his MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Williams completed his Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Central Arkansas.

Lana Williams, RN, MSN, CPHQ  Chief Nursing Officer   Arkansas Methodist Medical Center   900 West Kingshighway   Paragould, AR 72450   870-239-7450   www.myammc.org  

Williams started at Arkansas Methodist Medical Center as the Director of Performance Improvement in 2001.  She was given additional duties as the Assistant Chief Nursing Officer in 2007 and was named the Chief Nursing Officer in 2012.  She has held a certification in Healthcare Quality from the Healthcare Quality Certification Commission since 2005.  She is a member of the Arkansas Association for Healthcare Quality, the Arkansas Organization of Nurse Executives, Leadership Paragould Class VIII, and the Paragould Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.  As the Chief Nursing Officer, Williams is responsible for the practice of nursing by ensuring consistency in the standard of nursing practice across all clinical areas. As a member of the administrative team, she supports and facilitates a team approach in strategic planning, development, implementation and evaluation of clinical programs and services; assuring appropriate resources for the delivery of

Arkansas Medical News 47


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 quality healthcare to patients, families and the communities AMMC serves. Williams graduated from Arkansas State University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science in Nursing, Adult Health Nursing, with an emphasis in Nursing Administration. 

Mark Williams, Ph.D. Dean, UAMS Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 4301 West Markham St. Little Rock, AR 72205 501-526-6700 MLW@uams.edu

Williams was named dean in 2019. His public health career spans over 30 years, having published more than 200 peer-reviewed articles and chapters. His research focuses on behavioral epidemiology, disease prevention and health promotion in underserved and minority populations. Williams came to UAMS from the Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work at Florida International University. Williams was one of the first to study the epidemiology and prevention of HIV in drug users and was an original contributor to the development of community-based prevention interventions with this population.

Jason K. Wilson, CPA, FACMPE Chief Executive Officer Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas (MANA) 3383 North MANA Court, Suite 201 Fayetteville, Arkansas 72703 479-571-6780 mana.md

Wilson serves as CEO of Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas. He was a principal in the establishment of the physician and clinic group in 2000 and served as the Chief Financial Officer for 10 years prior to being appointed to Chief Executive Officer in June 2010. Wilson monitors the business and strategic areas of MANA and works with the physician board of directors to implement the business policies of the physician owned company. Wilson is a 1992 graduate of the University of Arkansas with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He worked with several medical clinics in

48 Arkansas Medical News

Northwest Arkansas as a senior accountant at Baird, Kurtz and Dobson. Wilson then worked as Chief Financial Officer at MANA’s Fayetteville Diagnostic Clinic before the formation of MANA in 2000.

Gena Wingfield, CPA Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer   Arkansas Children’s, Inc.   1 Children’s Way   Little Rock, AR 72202  501-364-1100  wingfieldgg@ archildrens.org 

Wingfield has been the Chief Financial Officer for Arkansas Children’s Hospital since 1998 and is currently Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer for Arkansas Children’s. Since joining the hospital in 1985, Wingfield has held previous roles in finance, including controller and interim chief information officer. A graduate of the University of Central Arkansas in 1983 with a BBA in Accounting, she began working in public accounting for Arthur Young & Co. (now Ernst & Young) until joining Arkansas Children’s Hospital. Wingfield has served as a member of the Child Health Association (CHA) Audit/Compliance Committee and the CHA Financial Services Committee. She serves on the Finance Committee for the Children’s Hospitals’ Solutions for Patient Safety, and serves on the Board, the Finance Committee and the Executive Committee of the Women’s Foundation of Arkansas. Wingfield is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Arkansas Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Healthcare Financial Management Association.

Scott Winter Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 601 South Gaines Little Rock, AR 72201 501-378-2000

arkansasbluecross.com

Winter is responsible for the day-to-day responsibilities of the Financial Services Division, including financial reporting and operations, financial information systems, and administrative cost. Winter joined Arkansas Blue Cross in June 1996 as a staff accountant. He has held positions of Health Advantage controller, Arkansas Blue Cross statutory accounting manager, and lead

executive for Enterprise Financial Reporting. Winter earned his bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Central Arkansas in 1992 and his CPA in 1996. He is a board member of the Children’s Protection Center and treasurer of the Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas.

Edward L. Woody, FACHE Associate Medical Center Director   Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks   1100 N. College Ave  Fayetteville, AR 72703  479-443-4301   www.fayettevillear. va.gov  

Woody is a senior healthcare executive with over 30 years of federal and civilian experience in healthcare administration, resource management, strategic planning, operations, logistics, human resources, and clinical operations management. He has served as a senior executive in civilian post-acute rehabilitation hospitals. Additionally, he has experience as an Assistant Director with the Oklahoma City Veterans Health Care System. Woody is a graduate of the VA’s inaugural Health Care Executive Fellowship program (HCEF) and completed his one-year fellowship at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System in San Antonio, Texas in August of 2013. Prior to the fellowship, he served as a Regional Operations Director in the Memphis, Tennessee market for DaVita Dialysis, Inc., managing the operations of 21 dialysis clinics. Woody served in the United States Army as a Medical Service Corps Officer for over 20 years, retiring in September 2007 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his career he held various leadership and staff positions from the platoon level to service at the Secretary of the Army level. Woody graduated from the University of Memphis in 1987, with a Bachelor of Business Administration. In 1997, he earned a Master of Business Administration from Webster University. He is currently pursuing an Education Doctorate (Ed. D) at Baylor University.  Woody is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and is a recipient of the U.S. Army Order of Military Medical Merit. 


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021 Birch G. Wright, MPA Chief Operating Officer and Hospital Administrator Washington Regional Medical Center 3215 N North Hills Blvd. Fayetteville, AR 72703 479-463-1000 wregional.com

Wright joined Washington Regional as Chief Operating Office and Hospital Administrator in 2020. He previously served as Associate Medical Director and COO of the Veterans Healthcare System of the Ozarks. He held various leadership roles within the VA Healthcare System including Business and Financial Operations Director and Chief Financial Officer. Wright earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with a minor in social work and a Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in healthcare administration from the University of Arkansas.

Robert Wright Vice President of Primary Care Services White River Health System (WRHS) 1710 Harrison Street Batesville, AR 72501 870-262-1200 wrmc.com

As Vice President of Primary Care Services, Wright’s duties include administrative responsibility for WRHS rural and primary care clinics in 10 communities across the WHRS service area, facility management, and outpatient physical rehab services. Wright joined WRHS in April 1989. He began his career as a Radiologic Technologist at White River Medical Center in the Radiology and Emergency Departments. Throughout his tenure, Wright has served in many leadership positions. He served as Director of Radiology, Cardiac Cath Lab, and Cardiac Rehab. In 2011, he was named Associate Administrator of Ancillary and Support Services. In 2013, he was named Associate Administrator for Clinic and Physician Services.   

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Salena WrightBrown PhD, MNSc, APRN, RN Associate Director for Patient Care Services/Nurse Executive Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 4300 West 7th Street Little Rock, AR 72205 501-257-5400

www.littlerock.va.gov

Wright-Brown’s VA career began at the Fayetteville VAMC in 1996 where she served until appointed as the Associate Director, Patient Care Services at the G.V. (Sonny) Montgomery Medical Center in Jackson, MS in 2014. She is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse who has practiced in Emergency Department, Occupational Health and Cardiovascular diagnostics. She has served as Nursing Manager, Coordinator of Nursing Clinical Support and as a Senior Nursing Leader. She has chaired/ co-chaired the Veterans Experience Board, Nursing Quality Councils, VISN Healthcare Delivery, Strategic Planning Committee and others. She serves the Quality Safety and Value committee, Joint Leadership Council, Accreditation Oversight and others. She is a member and served in leadership roles in professional organizations including Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society, International Association of Forensic Nurses, American Nurses Association, NWA Critical Incident Stress Management, Nurses Christian Fellowship and the Emergency Nurses Association.

David Wroten Executive Vice President Arkansas Medical Society 10 Corporate Hill Drive, Suite 300 Little Rock, AR 72205 501-224-8967 www.arkmed.org

Wroten began his career with the Arkansas Medical Society in 1983, serving first as professional relations coordinator and later as the assistant executive vice president. In 2005, he became the society’s Executive Vice President. Wroten is responsible for implementing the association’s policies and programs, including overseeing its business and financial affairs and staff of eleven. He also serves as president and CEO of AMS Benefits, Inc., a for-profit subsidiary of the

Arkansas Medical Society, which provides various types of insurance and other services to AMS members.

Julie Wylie, MS, APRN, ANP-C President Arkansas Nurse Practitioner Association PO Box 7887 Little Rock, AR 72217 870-675-1213

president@ anpassociation.org

Wylie is currently President of Arkansas Nurse Practitioner Association and has been on the board of directors for the past five years in various roles. She has practiced as an Adult Nurse Practitioner for the past 14 years.  She currently works for South Arkansas Nephrology Associates.  She previously worked for Baylor University Medical Center for nine years before relocating back to south Arkansas.  She has experience in adult chronic care and has worked in specialty care areas such as nephrology, cardiology, and cardiothoracic post op surgical care.  Born and raised in Camden, Arkansas, Wylie currently lives in El Dorado Arkansas with her husband and son.  She is a graduate of University of Arkansas with her BSN and a graduate of Texas Woman’s University with her MS in Adult Health Nurse Practitioner.  She has a passion for access to care and is in the process of joining South Arkansas Adult Medicine Clinic to work in primary care.    

X Vince Xayasane Chief Financial Officer Medical Center of South Arkansas 700 West Grove Street El Dorado, AR 71730 870-875-6265 www.themed center.net

Xayasane, originally from Dumas, Texas and has been working in the healthcare industry for over 21 years. He received his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Finance at the University of Tennessee. Vince most recently served as Assistant CFO at CHS affiliate hospital, Porter Regional Hospital in Valparaiso, Indiana.

Arkansas Medical News 49


InCharge HEALTHCARE 2021

Arkansas InCharge Healthcare 2021 Company Index A

D

Arkana Labs 34 Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield 11, 12, 16, 34, 48 Arkansas Children’s, Inc. 11, 16, 23, 33, 35, 40, 41, 48 Arkansas Children’s Northwest 23, 26, 32 Arkansas Children’s Research Institute 33 Arkansas Department of Health 38 Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care 22 Arkansas Heart Hospital 27, 33, 34 Arkansas Heart Hospital – Encore 24, 38 Arkansas Hospital Association 39, 45 Arkansas Medical Group Management Association 34 Arkansas Medical Society 42, 47, 49 Arkansas Methodist Medical Center 15, 31, 44, 47 Arkansas Nurse Practitioner Association 49 Arkansas Rural Health Partnership 14 Arkansas Spine and Pain 17, 37 Arkansas State Hospital 40 Arkansas Surgical Hospital 19 Arkansas Urology 15

Dardanelle Regional Medical Center 18

B Baptist Health 11, 12, 18, 32, 46, 47 Baptist Memorial Hospital – Crittenden 47 Baxter Regional Medical Center 19, 23, 36, 45 Bradley County Medical Center 23, 26 C CARTI 20, 22, 30, 31, 33, 40, 41, 42, 43 Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 17, 32, 40, 49 CHI St. Vincent 10, 11, 15, 18, 22, 28, 39, 47 CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute 2, 10 CHI St. Vincent Morrilton 10 Community Quality Alliance 41 Conway Regional Health System 14, 18, 20, 31, 38, 45 Cornerstone Clinic for Women 15

50 Arkansas Medical News

F

Northwest Medical Center – Springdale 16, 46 Northwest Medical Center - Willow Creek Women’s Hospital 32 Northwest Physicians 21 O

Forrest City Medical Center 11 G GastroArkansas 36 H HaagBrown Medical 13 Highlands Oncology 26 J Jefferson Regional Medical Center 23, 27, 36, 44 L Little Rock Dermatology Clinic 46 M Magnolia Regional Medical Center 28, 40 Mark Matthews Photo/Video 51 MD Growth 21 Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas (MANA) 26, 30, 31, 48 Medical Center of South Arkansas 21, 43, 44, 45, 49 Mercy Clinic Fort Smith 18, 19, 20, 26 Mercy Clinic Northwest Arkansas 20, 26, 37 Mercy Hospital Fort Smith 19, 20 Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas 12, 36

OrthoArkansas 11 P Pro Assurance 25 Pulaski County Medical Society 39, 46 R Riverside Bank and Mortgage 33 S Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center 10, 20, 23, 24, 28 Saline Memorial Hospital 43 Siloam Springs Regional Hospital 12 Snell Prosthetics & Orthotics 9, 42 St. Bernards Healthcare 11, 12, 14, 20, 24, 30, 35 SVMIC 24, 37, 44 U Unity Health 24, 28, 30, 46 University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 12, 14, 15, 19, 20, 24, 27, 29, 31, 32, 34, 35, 36, 38, 39, 42, 43, 44, 46, 47, 48, 52 V Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks 10, 27, 35, 46, 48

N

W

NEA Baptist Health System 17, 21, 28, 31, 39, 44 North Arkansas Regional Medical Center 14, 15, 30, 35 Northwest Health 18, 22, 35, 41 Northwest Health Physicians’ Specialty Hospital 12 Northwest Medical Center – Bentonville 10, 30

Washington Regional Medical System 16, 21, 34, 38, 40, 43, 49 White River Health System (WRHS) 14, 19, 27, 36, 38, 42, 49


Introducing the new UAMS Health Aortic Center UAMS Health Aortic Center Team

Mohammed Moursi, M.D.

Kyla Shelton, M.D.

Kalenda Kasangana, M.D.

Christian Simmons, M.D., Ph.D.

Jay Bhama, M.D.

Chief of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Vascular Surgeon

Aortic Center Director, Vascular Surgeon

Vascular Surgeon

Vascular Surgeon

Chief of Cardiovascular Surgery, Cardiovascular Surgeon

The new Aortic Center at UAMS Health brings together comprehensive, multidisciplinary treatment of the full range of aortic diseases and conditions for patients of any age.

Aortic Center

24/7 Emergency Response Just one call to the Physician’s Call Center, 501-686-6080, will enable referring doctors to speak to a vascular surgeon and arrange an immediate transfer via an “aortic pathway” designation.

Learn more at UAMS.Health/AorticCenter

Located on the Little Rock campus, the center includes an expanded team of board-certified surgeons and offers the most advanced vascular surgical options in the state. The center offers early and complete diagnosis, appropriate medical and/or surgical management, and long-term follow up. We care for critical conditions such as aortic dissections and ruptures requiring emergency care as well as elective procedures. In addition to four vascular surgeons, the center’s specialists include cardio-thoracic surgeons, medical geneticists, cardiovascular anesthesiologists in the operating room, board-certified critical care surgeons in the ICU as well as multidisciplinary post-surgical care in the ICU and on regular floors. The UAMS Health Aortic Center provides state-of-theart complex open and endovascular surgery. UAMS is the state leader in endovascular, minimally-invasive procedures and our vascular surgeons are the only ones in the state performing fenestrated endovascular aortic operations used to treat patients with complex aneurysms.

Profile for Medical News

2021 Arkansas Medical News InCharge Healthcare  

Your 2021 Directory of Healthcare Leaders in Arkansas

2021 Arkansas Medical News InCharge Healthcare  

Your 2021 Directory of Healthcare Leaders in Arkansas

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