Welsh, Wilson to head rural transformation team
University of Maryland Shore Regional Health has named a new executive director of its Chestertown hospital.
According to a news release, Dennis Welsh has been named vice president of Rural Health Transformation and executive director of UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. He joined the UM Shore Regional Health leadership team this month.
Supporting Welsh in leading rural health transformation initiatives for UM Shore Regional Health is Lara Wilson.
“Dennis Welsh and Lara Wilson are a fantastic team who will lead the development and implementation of a new model of rural health care for the region,” said Ken Kozel, president and CEO, UM Shore Regional Health, in a statement.
Wilson has been named director of Rural Health Care Transformation at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. She will begin in her new role in May 2021.
Welsh brings two decades of senior leadership experience in rural health care settings, including strategic planning, operations management, organizational transformation, change management, technology implementation, lean management, corporate compliance, data security/ privacy, grant/capital funding and healthcare consulting, the release states.
Welsh served three years as president and CEO of Down East Community Hospital, a full-service, independent rural hospital located in Machias, Maine.
During Welsh’s tenure, the hospital enjoyed significant growth in several areas,
including family practice and laboratory services, the release states. He also planned and led a multimillion-dollar upgrade of the Emergency Department and implemented effective, long-term strategic plans for the hospital.
Previously, Welsh spent 13 years at Eastern Maine Health Care Systems’ Charles A. Dean Memorial Hospital, a full-service critical access hospital with off-site rural health clinics in Greenville, Maine, including nine years as executive vice president and chief operating officer.
Welsh’s educational credentials include a Master of Health Care Administration from St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pa. and a bachelor’s degree from Point Park College in Pittsburgh, Pa. He is a fellow of the American College of Health Care Executives and holds multiple health care specialty certifications.
Wilson also is a proven health leader, bringing experience in the nonprofit, hospital and community health industries to her role, the release states.
She comes to UM Shore Regional Health after serving six years as executive director of the Maryland Rural Health Association, based in Centreville.
In that capacity, with the goal of improving the health of Maryland’s rural communities, Wilson provided leadership and advocacy, program and strategic planning, financial management and personnel management, communications
and marketing and membership development and services, the release states.
Since 2017, Wilson also has served as an independent consultant for Merchant McIntyre in Washington, D.C., providing grant support to rural hospitals and health care organizations across the country and strategizing with top rural health care organization leadership to brainstorm new ways to increase funding for the rural communities.
Wilson’s prior experience includes two years as senior director, Grant Development, and administrator for Hospital Owned Physician Practices at Garrett Regional Medical Center in Oakland; three years as practice manager, Maryland Primary Care Physicians, based in Annapolis; and four years as project director for the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
Wilson holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Maryland, a master’s degree in health systems administration from Georgetown University and multiple specialized certifications, including Lean Six Sigma —Yellow Belt.
“Dennis brings two decades of experience leading critical access hospitals and has a real passion for rural health care. His expertise will be complemented by Lara’s skills in working with community partners to build the programs in the Aging & Wellness Center of Excellence and her in-depth knowledge of the Maryland health care landscape, our key community partners and our legislators. I am so grateful to have them joining our team,” Kozel said.