Jen Sadoff, the new CEO of Moab Regional Hospital, consults with registered nurse Amy Keepers. [Photo by Eric Trenbeath / Moab Sun News]

It’s official: The Moab Valley Healthcare Board has selected Jen Sadoff to be the next Chief Executive Officer of Moab Regional Hospital.

A 15-year resident of Moab, Sadoff held the position of director of marketing, community relations and development at the hospital since January 2012. She had been serving as the hospital’s interim CEO for the past five months, since former CEO Robb Austin retired after a two-year stint earlier this year.

Moab Valley Healthcare Board President and chairman Mike Bynum said that during the interim, numerous community members, physicians and employees suggested to the board that a search for another CEO was unnecessary.

“We had an excellent team leader in Jen,” Bynum said. “She has a proven track record with our hospital and our community.”

Bynum said that Sadoff took a collaborative approach to leadership. In her former role, he said, she was instrumental in helping the hospital through significant challenges, including securing seed money for additional federal funding, engaging in difficult negotiations with health insurance giant Regence Blue Cross/Blue Shield, and aiding in the hospital’s financial turnaround.

Moab Regional Hospital, which replaced the aging Allen Memorial, faced significant financial woes after opening in February 2011. After reaching crisis proportions in the summer of 2012, the hospital crossed over into the black in 2013, and later that year, it received an award for the biggest financial turnaround at a critical access care hospital.

Board member and Moab Family Medicine physician Dr. Kathy Williams concurred that one of Sadoff’s key strengths is her ability to communicate and collaborate.

“She seeks out advice,” Williams said. “She has good people skills, and her communication style involves all of the parties.”

Williams said there will be a learning curve, but said the board has observed her working in a variety of situations and that it is confident in her abilities. Williams added that she is surrounded by good people.

Williams said the board recognized that Sadoff was lacking in some qualifications on paper, like a degree in business administration, but that a hospital can’t always be run just like a business.

“There’s administration and being efficient, and then there’s quality patient care,” Williams said.

Sadoff said she is honored to be working with a team of “excellent providers in a fantastic facility,” and that she was grateful for the experience that has been brought to the table by Chief Financial Officer Craig Daniels, and Chief Clinical Officer Vicki Gigliotti.

“I feel like together, we have a really rounded team,” she said.

Sadoff said she feels she can offer a unique perspective to the position. She said that women make 80 percent of the health care decisions in their families, but account for just 4 percent of health care leadership, and that caring for her ailing father inspired her to get into health care administration.

“I really saw the failings in health care from a consumer perspective,” she said.

But now, after working in the health care industry, Sadoff said she has seen how the system is also challenging for providers, and that has inspired her to nourish a “culture of collaboration” in health care. She said that new requirements from Medicare are making it more difficult for physicians to do their jobs, and that an enormous amount of time is spent entering information into a computer.

“My job is to make sure that our health care providers have the support they need to practice medicine and not get bogged down in the business of health care,” she said.

Sadoff, who plans to get her master’s degree in business administration, moved to Moab from Boulder, Colorado, in 2000. She worked as an instructor in wilderness therapy – a job she credits with helping her develop her people skills, before getting a job as the executive director of the Youth Garden Project, a position she held for six years.

Bynum said that while she was at the Youth Garden Project, Sadoff developed new programs, expanded funding structures and created organizational stability – skills that apply to ongoing needs at the hospital.

“Jen is creative and capable at marshaling resources and expertise, and the board has the utmost confidence in her capabilities,” he said.

Williams said that Sadoff understands that it’s all about the quality of care that can be delivered to the community that’s important.

“She’s a community member and that informs her decision making,” she said.

Sadoff said she is looking forward to the challenges and opportunities that position provides, and that she is excited about new changes in the health care industry.

“I have a real perspective on keeping quality health care here in our community,” she said. “I’m ready to help take it to the next level.”

Board praises new CEO’s collaborative approach to leadership

We had an excellent team leader in Jen. She has a proven track record with our hospital and our community.