Chutes & Ladders—HCA's National Group president retiring after 36 years; Unite Us brings on American Express product head

Welcome to this week's Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please submit the good news—or the bad—from your shop, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.

HCA Healthcare

Chuck Hall
(HCA Healthcare)

Chuck Hall will retire from his role as HCA Healthcare’s National Group president at the end of the year after a 36-year run with the hospital chain, according to a Wednesday announcement.

Hall’s role placed him in charge of operations at 96 HCA hospitals across 13 states—more than half of the Nashville, Tennessee-based company’s 182-hospital total.

The organization credits Hall with the expansion of its graduate medical education programs and the implementation of its initial patient navigation program. More recently, he led roughly $10 billion of investments in HCA’s Florida operations that culminated in HCA Florida Healthcare emerging as the state’s largest health system.

Hall first came to the company in 1987 to serve as chief operating officer of its Sam Houston Memorial Hospital in Texas. He would go on to serve as CEO of two hospitals and president of several divisions before stepping into his current role in 2006.

HCA said it has launched a search for Hall’s replacement.  

Unite Us

Raffaelle Breaks
(Unite Us)

Raffaelle Breaks has joined healthcare and social services tech platform Unite Us as chief product officer, according to a press release.

The London native is coming off of 20 years at American Express, where she headed a team of almost 400 for over 28 million customers.

While there, Breaks shepherded the launch of several payment, servicing and lending features and led product development of the company’s mobile app.

Breaks’ new position will put her in charge of Unite Us’ product management and design team. Her team will be integrating the tech of recently acquired referral platform NowPow into Unite Us’ existing platform.

Cardinal Health

Jason Hollar
(Cardinal Health)

Mike Kaufmann, CEO of Cardinal Health, will be stepping down from his position Aug. 31 and be succeeded by current Chief Financial Officer Jason Hollar, the pharmaceuticals and medical products distributor announced during last week’s earnings call.

Kaufmann has been with the company for over 30 years and served as CEO for nearly five. He will also be resigning from the board of directors.

Hollar, who has also joined the board, held his chief financial officer role at Cardinal since May 2020. In the past couple of years, Hollar has focused on investing in growth businesses, strengthening the company’s balance sheet and returning capital to its shareholders.

Prior to joining, he had served as chief financial officer and EVP of Tenneco as well as chief financial officer and SVP of finance for Sears Holdings Corporation.

Patricia English, currently chief accounting officer and SVP, has been tapped to step in as interim chief financial officer as the company seeks out Hollar’s permanent replacement. The job title changes will go into effect Sept. 1.

Sentara Healthcare

Colin Drozdowski
(Sentara Healthcare)

Colin Drozdowski will step up as SVP of Sentara Healthcare and president of Sentara Health Plans, the system’s insurance division, according to a recent announcement.

The executive has served as an SVP of the division since 2019 and currently heads its comprehensive health solutions. He is succeeding Dennis Matheis, who earlier this year was announced as the 12-hospital system’s next top executive.  

Drozdowski is credited with helping bring Virginia Premier into Sentara Health Plans, which was the largest transaction to date and helped the organization grow to over 950,000 members.

He had previously spent 26 years with Blue Cross Blue Shield, capping that time off with a role as SVP of provider solutions for Anthem in charge of about 2,500 employees nationwide.

Drozdowski and Matheis will both move into their new positions Sept. 1.

> Ascension promoted Richard Fogel, M.D., to executive vice president and chief clinical officer of the large nonprofit system.

> University of Missouri Health Care named Dustin Thomas as chief financial officer.

> LifePoint Health promoted Elliott Brown to treasurer and vice president of finance and investor relations.

> Dartmouth Health, in New Hampshire, tapped Brant Oliver as system vice president of care experience.

> Carle Health insurance division Health Alliance Medical Plans promoted Chief Operating Officer Sinead Rice Madigan to president and CEO.

> Atlantic Health System, in New Jersey, named Scott Leighty executive vice president and chief health system officer.

> Well Health, a patient communications platform, announced Julie Schubert as vice president of professional services.

> University of Chicago Medicine unveiled Maia Hightower, M.D., as executive vice president and chief data technology officer.

> Suki, a voice artificial intelligence technology company, added Belwadi Srikanth as vice president of product and design as well as Anmol Rastogi as senior director of product management.

> Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts brought on Karl Laskowski, M.D., as vice president and medical director of clinical programs and strategy.

> Resilience Lab, a mental health tech company, promoted Patrick Morselli to chief operating officer, John Hamby to general manager and Alyssa Lin to head of growth.

> Lumeris, a value-based care technology company, appointed Julie Hammes as senior vice president of people and culture.

> University of California San Diego Health tapped Joshua Glandorf as chief information officer.

> Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center and its Roy and Patricia Disney Family Cancer Center named Karl Keeler as chief executive.

> University Medical Center New Orleans announced Emily Sedgwick, M.D., as president and CEO.

> Verato, an identity verification technology company for healthcare, picked up Richard Jordan as chief commercial officer.

> Norwest hired Brian Matesic, M.D., as a principal on its healthcare investment team.