Patients & Visitors
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The Houston County Health Care Authority announced today that Richard (Rick) O. Sutton, FACHE, has been appointed as system chief executive officer (CEO) for Southeast Alabama Medical Center (SAMC) and the president for the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM). In this role, Sutton has executive oversight for Southeast Alabama Medical Center, Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine, Southeast Alabama Medical Center Foundation and Medical Center Barbour. He will begin his tenure at SAMC on May 16, 2016.
“We are pleased to welcome Rick Sutton as the new leader for Southeast Alabama Medical Center,” says Chester Sowell, Houston County Health Care Authority Chairman. “Sutton has a track record of leading high performing health systems with a focus on operational and clinical excellence. In his 30 year career he has led hospitals that are consistently ranked in the top 100 nationally for quality, safety, and patient satisfaction. We believe he brings a level of expertise that will benefit our patients, staff and students.”
Sutton currently serves as chief executive officer for three Banner Health Northern Colorado Hospitals, which includes North Colorado Medical Center, McKee Medical Center and Banner Fort Collins Medical Center.
“I am pleased and grateful to have the opportunity to join the strong leadership team at Southeast Alabama Medical Center and the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine,” Sutton said. “I look forward to working with the entire team to build upon the excellent quality and service available to those we serve.”
Sutton has extensive experience in healthcare which includes a background in hospital operations in the military and civilian settings. Notably, he joined Banner Health in 2001 as chief executive officer of Ogallala Medical Center in Ogallala, Nebraska. Since that time he has progressed within the Banner organization. He served as chief operating officer at Banner Mesa Medical Center in Mesa, Arizona. He was later appointed as CEO at McKee Medical Center (MMC), and then named CEO at North Colorado Medical Center (NCMC) in Greeley, Colorado.
Under his leadership, both MMC and NCMC have reached unprecedented heights in operations and clinical performance. NCMC was recognized as one of Healthgrades “America’s 50 Best Hospitals” in 2015 and 2016 following five consecutive years of designation as one of Healthgrades’ America’s 100 Best Hospitals. McKee won the Healthgrades’ America’s 100 Best Hospitals award in 2014 and has received designation as an Outstanding Patient Experience awardee for seven consecutive years. In addition, either NCMC or McKee have received the Banner Health system “Best of the Best Hospitals” award seven of the last eight years.
Sutton earned his undergraduate degree in business management from the University of Mississippi, in 1986. He then served in the United States Army from 1986 to 1999 where he held various roles in the military healthcare delivery system. In 1995, Sutton completed a Masters in Healthcare Administration (MHA) from Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. He also served Trinity Health in South Bend, Indiana from 1999-2001. He is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives. Sutton and his wife Bonnie have two grown sons.
The Houston County Health Care Authority initiated a national search for the next leader for Southeast Alabama Medical Center, after Ronald S. Owen, the current CEO of SAMC announced his plans to retire. Owen had been at the helm of SAMC for over 18 years. His last day with the organization will be April 29, 2016.
The Alabama State Nurses Association (ASNA) recently presented SAMC CEO Ron Owen with the D. O. McClusky Award, which goes annually to a healthcare administrator who has demonstrated outstanding support of nurses during the past year. Presenting on behalf of ASNA are Diane Buntyn, RN, vice president, Patient Care Services; Tammy Smith, RN, director, Women’s Center; and Jan Wynn, director, 2-East/Orthopedics.