Lake Regional CEO resigns, looks toward future

Lake Sun Leader

(Editor’s Note: This is the first of two articles about Lake Regional Health System’s CEO Dane Henry as he charts a new career path. The second article Sept. 15 will examine the challenges LRHS has faced and its future.)

Dane Henry, CEO Lake Regional.

An unexpected opportunity in the medical field has drawn Lake Regional Health Systems CEO Dane Henry in a new direction in the southeast United States.

Henry recently announced his resignation as CEO after nearly five years of leading the health system through some challenging times and some impressive expansion.

Henry as accepted the position of president of Partners Cooperative effective Jan. 3, 2022.

Partners Cooperative, Inc. is a hospital shared services cooperative (not-for-profit) providing contracting and purchasing services to its membership.

“It’s a super-regional/national group purchasing supply chain and health care services contracting entity that supports 30 hospital systems, and growing, of well more than 100 hospitals nationally for all of the things they need to acquire logistically or servicewise -- essentially everything that a health care system needs to conduct its business to take of the people in its community.”

During the next few weeks the Lake Regional Board of Directors and leadership team will plan the transition. A search firm will be engaged to seek a new CEO. It is anticipated that this process will take about six months, so an interim CEO likely will be designated in January, a hospital spokesman said.

“I believe our team will be successful in continuing bold, innovative leadership for this amazing oration during this transition and into the future,” Henry said.

Jim Judas, Jr., Lake Regional Board of Directors president, offered this comment:

“On behalf of the Lake Regional Health System Board of Directors, I wish to thank Dane W. Henry, FACHE, for his exceptional service to the health system and the community we serve. His vision has helped us build a stronger organization based on commitment to culture and shared values. Dane’s energy and determination have shaped the work we do today, as well as where we see ourselves in the future.

 “As we begin the search for Dane’s successor, the board stands firmly committed to continuing the work we’ve started. It’s imperative that we keep pushing forward – growing our footprint, implementing technology and facilities projects that promote safety and efficiency, recruiting the best physicians, and rallying community support for advanced health care services.  

 “Although Dane was the first to share this vision for success, his executive team and department leaders have built upon that vision. As we enter an interim period, it is important for our employees and the community to know that the board has full faith in this group to continue executing on these strategic priorities. We will continue to provide the support and resources our executive team needs to get the job done.

“During the coming weeks, the board will take time to begin the search in earnest for Lake Regional’s next chief executive officer. Because this change was not anticipated, it may take several weeks to give these next steps thoughtful consideration. Meanwhile, we congratulate Dane on this wonderful opportunity at Partners Cooperative Inc., where he will lead an organization that supports more than 30 health systems and their hospital subsidiaries.

Henry had high praise for LRHS.

“To be very, very bottom line with you I honestly think that Lake Regional’s future is going to be more opportunity based than challenge focused. Most importantly, when you have an organization that is appropriately sized, with highly, highly capable people, is very, very nimble and comprised of amazing people, incredible physicians, some of the best doctors I’ve worked with in health care in the past 30 years, that organization is going to do things and continue to do things that nobody would ever think possible from a 120-bed hospital. That’s been the story of Lake Regional and that’s what drew me to the hospital 5 years ago.”