Wheless Partners Lands CEO for Fulcrum Health

May 15, 2017 – Healthcare is among the most rapidly growing employment fields, according to analysts at Hunt Scanlon Media, which tracks trends in the executive search and leadership solutions space. This has led to an increased need for recruiting firms to deliver top-drawer leaders throughout the sector. To that end, search firm Wheless Partners has recently placed Patricia Dennis as chief executive officer of Fulcrum Health. She succeeds Tabatha Erck, the company’s CEO of eight years.

Ms. Dennis most recently served as senior vice president for health and care engagement at HealthPartners where she was responsible for the vision, strategic direction and operational leadership for delivering an integrated and personalized experience for patients and members. In addition to her work at HealthPartners, she has served in leadership roles at Healthways/Tivity and Medica, and has held management positions in banking, commercial construction and government service industries.

Search Process

During the Wheless Partner search, a large prospect pool was narrowed in stages to a small group who interviewed with the board’s CEO search committee, and then to a final pool of candidates who met with board leadership.

“After a comprehensive, national search process, the board is pleased to have found the best individual to assume leadership of this organization,” said Dr. Mark Dehen, chair of Fulcrum’s board of directors. “We’ve selected a very strong leader at a time when Fulcrum is in a very strong position. Ms. Dennis’ extensive healthcare background and ability to translate vision and strategy into world-class execution make her an extraordinary fit.”

Healthcare is in a state of constant flux, said Kim Mageau, a Fulcrum board director and CEO search committee member. “Fulcrum’s role in transforming the healthcare industry away from a cost-per-transaction model into a new paradigm based on outcomes has never been more important.”

“The board is confident Ms. Dennis will leverage her full breadth of industry experience to bring Fulcrum’s conservative care model for physical medicine to the forefront as industry best practice,” Ms. Mageau said. “Her strong leadership will ensure Fulcrum’s ongoing growth and expansion.”

Fulcrum Health is a non-profit organization that develops innovative and inspiring ways to leverage physical medicine that not only help reduce healthcare costs, but achieve better outcomes and increased patient satisfaction. The organization offers an array of physical health products and services including chiropractic, acupuncture, physical, occupational, speech and massage therapy.

Wheless Partners is a talent advisory firm with professionals in strategy, assessment, executive selection, leadership development, and executive coaching. Since its founding in 1986, Wheless Partners has partnered with global Fortune 500 companies, mid-size enterprises, leading public and private institutions, investment portfolio companies, not-for-profit foundations and smaller entrepreneurial startups across all industries and functions.

Healthcare Recruiting

The healthcare space remains a major specialty of Wheless Partners and an area in which it continues to invest. Its team of consulting partners have worked with a broad range of healthcare providers, from hospitals and academic medical centers to payer organizations and non-profit foundations. 

According to the firm, few sectors of the global economy are as critical to domestic output, national stability and human performance as the healthcare industry. Here’s a look at some recent CEO search activity at healthcare companies from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:

Furst Group recruited Patricia Ahern as CEO of Care Dimensions. Most recently, Ms. Ahern was CEO of the Center for Hospice and Palliative Care in Buffalo. Care Dimensions, founded in 1978 as Hospice of the North Shore, was one of the nation’s first hospice providers.

The Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) has retained executive search firm Tuft & Associates to lead its search for a new CEO. Executive search associate Carole Z. Badger is leading the assignment. OREF raises funds to support research aimed at building a scientific base for orthopedic practice.

Slone Partners recently placed Mark Harvill and Daniel Brazell CEOs at Avomeen Analytical Services and La Peer Health Systems, respectively. Previously, Mr. Harvill served as COO at Clinipace Worldwide. Mr. Brazell previously served as senior director of operations at Surgical Care Affiliates/DISC Sports and Spine.

The Center for Human Drug Research (CHDR) has retained Russell Reynolds Associates to lead its CEO search. Jacques Bouwens, leader of the search firm’s global healthcare practice, is leading the assignment. CHDR is a privately held research organization that provides a full range of early stage clinical pharmacology services.

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

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