Hospital Authority votes to seek new CEO through national search

Published 9:26 pm Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Following an executive session of the Memorial Hospital and Manor Authority to discuss personnel at its meeting Tuesday evening, the Authority returned to open session and a motion was made by Rusty Davis, seconded by Donald Barber, not to renew CEO Billy Walker’s contract that expires April 30. The motion passed unanimously.

In a prepared statement, Authority Chairperson Glennie Bench said, “Last year Memorial and Manor CEO, Billy Walker, and the Hospital Authority entered into an employment contract that expires April 30. The parties have reached an agreement that his employment as CEO will end on that date.

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“We wish Billy much success in the future. We would like to point out the substantial amount of work that was done this past year, resulting in a more financially stable hospital. We recognize there is still work to be done, but Billy’s contribution to the progress we’ve already made should not be overlooked,” said Bench.

“The Authority will soon initiate a national search for a new CEO. In the meantime, the members of the Authority will be working closely with the executive team at Memorial to ensure all operations at the hospital, Memorial Manor, Willow Ridge and their employed physician’s offices continue to fulfill their mission to provide quality healthcare to the community.”

Walker has been CEO of Memorial for six years, after serving 17 years as the Chief Financial Officer.

Bench said that the terms of his contract entered into last year allowed for severance pay in the amount of six months of his yearly salary, plus one month for each year of his service as CEO (six months). According to a response to the open records request from The Post Searchlight in March, Walker’s annual salary was reported at $175,115.

Bench complimented Walker for the work he has done in the past year. “He dug his heels in and went to work for changes. The impact of his work is now being felt,” she explained. “I think the Authority just felt it was time for a change. I am glad he is leaving on a high note.”

She explained she expected he will work through to the end of his contract, April 30, basically helping with the transition.