Emory Healthcare Taps Witt/Kieffer for Chief Nursing Officer

June 6, 2016 – Executive search firm Witt/Kieffer has been retained by Atlanta-headquartered Emory Healthcare to lead its search for a system chief nursing executive (chief nursing officer).

Karen Otto, managing partner and practice leader, academic medicine and health sciences, is leading the search along with associate Hans Henson and senior partner Rachel Polhemus.

The incoming executive will be charged with leading the nursing practice across Emory’s full continuum of care and will report directly to the system president and chief executive officer of Emory Healthcare. The new leader’s strategic contributions will be key to assist the leadership team in developing a nursing organization that will support a clinically integrated network. The incumbent will maintain oversight and responsibility for the clinical, operational and financial practice of nursing across the organization’s continuum of care, which includes 4,500 nurses, staff within the physician enterprise, acute care and other ambulatory entities.

The executive will also be responsible for the professional nursing practice within Emory Healthcare and will work collaboratively with other chief nursing officers who are currently engaged at each of its hospitals, in collaboration with the medical staff. Managing a budget of $5.8 million, the executive will need to be fiscally responsible with a strong understanding of finance.


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With 14,000 employees, Emory Healthcare is the largest healthcare  system in Georgia and an integrated academic healthcare system committed to providing care for patients, educating health professionals and leaders for the future, pursuing discovery research in all of its forms, and serving the community. Emory Healthcare is nationally ranked for quality among the top 10 percent of academic medical centers in the U.S. according to the University HealthSystem Consortium (UHC) and Press Ganey.

Witt/Kieffer assists hospitals, health systems, academic medical centers, medical schools and physician groups; biotech, pharmaceutical, diagnostics and medical device companies; colleges and universities and not-for-profit community service and cultural organizations with senior administrative recruiting assignments. The firm is currently leading chief nursing officer searches for Baycare Health System, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Concord Hospital, St. Clair Hospital, and WellStar Kennestone Regional Medical Center.

Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media

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