Mercy Health CEO retires

John Starcher appointed President and CEO-Elect

Mercy Health CEO Michael Connelly announced his retirement.
L: Michael Connelly, R: John Starcher

CINCINNATI, Ohio (WKBN) – The president and CEO of Mercy Health announced Monday that he is retiring, effective Jan. 31, 2017.

Connelly served as president and CEO since 1995.

Mercy is the largest health system in Ohio and one of the largest in the United States, employing more than 34,000 people.

“Michael has served as a visionary leader in a time of extraordinary change in healthcare. Leading with integrity and compassion, he has shepherded Mercy Health’s development into a mission-focused organization that is recognized not only for its superior care and service, but its commitment to serving others, especially the poor and vulnerable,” said Katherine W. Vestal, PhD, RN, chair of Mercy Health’s Board of Trustees. “We are deeply grateful for his unwavering dedication and faithful stewardship, which have positioned the ministry for continued success in the years ahead.”

Following a multi-year succession planning effort, the Mercy Health Board of Trustees has named John Starcher as Connelly’s successor, appointing him president and CEO-elect. Starcher currently serves as Mercy Health’s executive vice president of operations in its southern markets and president and CEO of the Cincinnati Region, which includes five hospitals and 180 network locations.

Starcher returned to Mercy Health in January 2015 after serving as president and CEO of Naples, Florida-based Health Management Associates (HMA). Prior to joining HMA, he was CEO for three of four divisions within Mercy Health and also served as the organization’s senior vice president of Human Resources and assistant general counsel during his 13 year-tenure.

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