Northern Hospital of Surry County has a new CEO. Or at least it will come October.
The hospital’s board of trustees voted to appoint Ned Hill as the hospital’s new president and chief executive officer, effective Oct. 6. Hospital officials said Hill brings to the post 13 years of experience in the health care industry, including chief executive and operating positions at several community hospitals throughout the country.
His appointment brings to an end the hospital’s sometimes bumpy search to replaced long-time CEO Bill James, who left the hospital in April after 19 years at the helm. He left Northern to take the post of president of Wake Forest Baptist Health-Lexington Medical Center.
In the wake of his departure the board appointed E. Timothy Cook as interim CEO while the board planned to do a more exhaustive search for a permanent replacement. Cook began his duties on April 14 and by April 17 was abruptly out of the picture.
Hospital officials refused to say what happened to bring about such a sudden departure, other than saying he wasn’t a “good fit,” and that he had gotten off to a “slow” start.
“When you get off to a very slow start as an interim CEO,” there is a need to act, said Board Chairman Bill Woltz at the time. “We just made the decision quickly.”
Woltz refused to elaborate, other than to say at that time “The way things stand right now, let’s just leave it with the fact that he wasn’t a good fit for us in Mount Airy.”
That led the hospital to appointing E. Berton Whitaker to the interim post in June, where he has remained. Now, Hill will be taking over the job on a permanent basis.
Prior to accepting the position at Northern, Hill served as chief executive officer at Memorial Hospital of Carbon County in Wyoming. Hill also served as the chief operating officer at Health Management Associates hospitals in Durant, Oklahoma and Anniston, Alabama.
“Quorum Health Resources (QHR) conducted a national search for this position, and worked closely with us to identify the right candidate for our hospital and community,” Woltz said.
Hill earned both his bachelor’s degree in behavioral science and health and his master’s degree in public administration and health service administration from the University of Utah. He will be relocating to the Mount Airy area with his wife Emily and their four children.
“My family and I have served other communities in the Southeastern United States and have been eager to get back ever since,” said Hill. “We were very impressed with the board, physicians, staff and community of Mount Airy and are very excited to call it home. We look forward to serving the citizens of Surry County and being a part of the excellent care that is provided at the hospital.”