Chutes & Ladders—Novant Health names Pam Oliver as CMO; Inova hospital taps golden retriever as chief comfort officer

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.

Novant Health

Novant Health
(Novant Health )

Pam Oliver, M.D., has been promoted to executive vice president and chief medical officer of Novant Health.

In her new position, Oliver will oversee safety and quality along with credentialing and engagement of medical staff across Novant’s health system. She has been tapped from her position as executive vice president of Novant Health and Novant Health Physician Network. Oliver will continue leadership over health equity, medical education and clinical research.

Oliver has practiced OB-GYN at Novant Health WomanCare since 2005. She has held various positions at the health system, including submarket leader for specialty clinics in the greater Winston-Salem market, physician service line leader of women’s services for the greater Winston-Salem market and senior physician executive for the Novant Health Physician Network.

Aside from her work at Novant, Oliver has briefed U.S. congressional committees on Black maternal mortality and spoke on various panels addressing the crisis. North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper also appointed Oliver as the vice chair of the State Health Coordinating Council.

Commonwealth Care Alliance


Hany Abdelaal has been tapped for the newly created role of president of clinical services for Commonwealth Care Alliance (CCA).

In his new role, Abdelaal will be charged with leading all clinical services, care delivery and quality functions at the mission-driven healthcare organizations offering health plans and care delivery programs. He will also work collaboratively across CCA to improve the experience of customers.

Abdelaal joined the organization after a decade working as a physician executive at VNS Health where he was named president in 2015. During his tenure, he formed novel care management programs and tools, oversaw the response to COVID-19 and Superstorm Sandy and led membership growth and high scores in health plans serving Medicare and Medicaid populations. His work both at CCA and VNS has and will focus on patients with significant needs including long-term care for people with disabilities.  

Boston Medical Center


Alastair Bell, M.D., has been appointed chief executive officer of Boston Medical Center Health System.

In November, Bell was named president of the BMC Health System before being chosen as interim CEO of the health system in March. Before being hired as chief operating officer at BMC in 2021, Bell worked in international healthcare strategy at McKinsey and Company.

In his previous position, Bell used his role as COO to help address financial challenges and evolve operations. He helped lead the hospital through the COVID-19 pandemic, aided in the expansion of the WellSense Health Plan to increase access to care for historically marginalized populations and helped create Clearway Health, a pharmacy solutions company.

Inova Loudoun County Hospital


Jeremiah, Bartley and Moo have been jointly appointed chief comfort officers at Inova Loudoun County Hospital.

Jeremiah is the oldest of the three at 8 years old, Bartley is 6 and Moo is 3. Due to his age, Jill McCabe, M.D., advocated for Jeremiah to be designated senior chief comfort officer. Jeremiah is a golden retriever and lives with McCabe and her family. He works primarily with child life specialists while offering support to pediatric patients. Due to his age, he only works three days a week. He is a good boy.

Jeremiah was trained by Hero Dogs, an organization coaching service animals. He did not graduate from the program due to his fear of thunder and his tendency for being distracted by tennis balls. A small ceremony was held at the hospital to celebrate the dogs’ promotion from facility dogs to chief comfort officers. 

> First Choice Health promoted David Agler. M.D., to the position of chief medical officer

> Hinshaw and Culbertson appointed Adam Guetzow as co-practice group leader of its national healthcare practice.

> Carenet Health, a provider of healthcare consumer engagement solutions, announced that Holly McCann has joined the company as executive vice president of sales.

> HealthPartners welcomed Jennifer Danielson as its new executive vice president and chief health plan officer.

> Equip, a provider of virtual eating disorder treatment, added Nikia Bergan to its leadership team as the company’s first-ever president.

> System, a public benefit corporation developing a systems-based approach to better organize the world’s data, welcomed Paul B. Rothman and Andrew Trister as healthcare advisors.

> Tampa General Hospital announced that president and CEO John Couris accepted an offer from the board of directors to extend the terms of his employment agreement for an additional 10 years.

> Loyal named their first-ever chief financial officer, Austin Pauls.

> Andre Harvin is the new chief pharmacy officer for Cone Health.

> Versameb AG, a pre-clinical stage company focused on discovering and developing RNA-based therapeutics, appointed Roger Dmochowski as chief medical officer.

> Windham Venture Partners, a health venture capital firm, tapped David Kereiakes as managing partner.

> Hopper brought on Jonathan Simon as its co-founder and first chief technology officer.

> Icario named Julia Zhang as chief technology officer.

> C4 Therapeutics, a clinical-stage company advancing targeted protein degradation therapies, appointed Leonard (Len) Reyno, M.D., as chief medical officer.

> Providence Swedish revealed that James Park, M.D., has joined as the new North Puget Sound chief medical officer.