- Longtime Sutter Health CEO Patrick Fry has announced his retirement, effective January 4. The Sacramento, CA-based system's board has named Chief Operating Officer Sarah Krevans as Fry's replacecment.
- Fry told The Sacramento Bee that he intends to remain "engaged" in the healthcare industry and has been asked to serve on several boards.
- The transition, Fry says, is a natural part of the process to maintain top talent at the system, and that he and Krevens "have probably been working on this for the past 15 months or so."
What's notable about this transition is that Sutter has promoted a woman to its chief role. Women account for 73% of medical and health services managers, but just 18% of U.S. hospital CEOs are female.
A 2013-14 study done by the Diversified and the Women's Leadership Center through the Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University found that a significantly higher number of female executives were promoted from within their organizations while men were more likely to be recruited externally. The researchers suggested that this finding was likely related to the fact that men were more willing to relocate for their jobs than were women—but the study also found that men came from different professional backgrounds. 66% of men reported a background in medicine, finance or general administration, while 44% of women had nursing backgrounds.
Krevens bucks that trend: Her background is administrative. She holds master's degrees in business administration and public health from UC Berkley and at 29 became acting director of Medicaid, health planning and licensing programs in Maine. She has also served as senior vice president and area manager of Kaiser Permanente's six-county Valley Service Area (which has half a million members) and has been with Sutter since 1999.
Fry is credited with an extremely successful period in Sutter's history. Under his leadership, annual revenue grew from $6.7 billion to over $10 billion and the system created Sutter Medical Network, a 5,000-strong affiliated physician network.