March 12, 2020 – B.E. Smith, a healthcare-focused executive search firm, has placed Vern Carda as next chief executive officer for Estes Park Health, a medical center in Estes Park, CO. He will start his new role on March 23. Larry Leaming recently retired from the organization’s top role. Mick Ruel, vice president of executive search, led the assignment.
“We’re delighted that someone who has his knowledge and experience as well as he’s a great person,” said Dr. David Batey, chair of the board of directors.
Since 2015, Mr. Carda has been vice president of regional operations for the Billings Clinic which is based in Billings, MT. Billings Clinic is Montana’s largest healthcare organization and serves a vast region covering much of Montana, northern Wyoming and the western Dakotas. Within this region, Mr. Carda has had operational responsibility for 11 Critical Access Hospitals, four regional branch clinics and other regional partnerships, such as a joint venture cardiology program.
“Although I feel fortunate to have collected several years’ worth of great experiences as a hospital CEO or VP leader for critical access hospitals, I believe that I would transcend the title of ‘manager’ or ‘boss’ and find a way to effectively lead your organization to the future,” said Mr. Carda. “I believe that I have a natural ability to connect with people and build effective relationships that allow win-win operational situations for an organization. Additionally, I have an ability to create vision for the future and lead people to that vision.”
Estes Park Health, founded in 1975 as the Elizabeth Knutsson Memorial Hospital, sees over 18,000 patients each year for both outpatient and inpatient services. Its facilities include a 23-bed critical access acute care hospital, a 24-hour emergency department, emergency medical services/ambulance services, a level IV trauma center, physician clinic, medical and surgical services, home health, hospice care and a 52-bed skilled nursing facility.
B.E. Smith was selected for this important search that started with a list of 38 national healthcare executive search firms. The list was reduced to 11 based on recommendations from multiple sources and reviews of their online information. Of those, seven were asked to submit proposals for the CEO search, and reviews of the proposals resulted in three finalist search firms. The finalists, in turn, were asked to respond to 23 questions and were interviewed.
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Founded in 1978, Lenexa, KS-based B.E. Smith is a full-service healthcare interim leadership placement and executive search firm. For nearly a decade, the organization has been recognized annually by Modern Healthcare as one of the top search firms in its sector. The firm places interim leaders and executives across all healthcare settings, including acute care hospitals, academic medical and children’s hospitals, physician practices and post-acute care providers.
Among its recent searches B.E. Smith has helped to place the president and CEO for the Washington Permanente Medical Group, CEO for Rochelle (IL) Community Hospital and group chief financial officer for Bon Secours Mercy Health.
Mr. Ruel is vice president of senior executive search. He is the practice leader in rural and critical access hospital executive search. Mr. Ruel, who joined the firm in 2012, previously managed a national executive search practice with a human resource consulting firm exclusive to the healthcare industry.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media