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Bainbridge Memorial Hospital hires new CEO

Following a comprehensive search and interview process, the Hospital Authority of the City of Bainbridge and Decatur County has selected a new Chief Executive Officer.

In a called meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 24, the Authority approved the contract for James M. “Jim” Lambert. Lambert will assume leadership of the hospital, skilled nursing facility and physicians’ offices on Monday, Nov. 27.

The terms of his contract are for one year, to end on the 26th day of November, 2018, with the possibility of the contract being extended, “only for successive one month periods so long as the parties agree that it shall be so extended.”

He is to be compensated with an annual salary of $260,000. The contract states that, “the Hospital will review the performance of the CEO and based upon performance, Hospital will consider an increase in compensation and/or a bonus of up to 15 percent of the base salary. There will be no obligation on the part of the Hospital to increase compensation or to pay a bonus or to renew or extend CEO’s contract.”

Lambert comes to Bainbridge from Arkansas, where he served most recently as President of the Arkansas Health Alliance, a joint venture formed by CHI St. Vincent Health System and Conway Regional Health System. Prior to that he was President and CEO of Conway Regional Health System in Conway, Arkansas, having previously worked as Chief Operating Officer. During his tenure Conway Regional Health System earned the Arkansas Governor’s Quality Award in 2014, and received “Best in State” ratings by Healthgrades and Carechex.

He holds a Master’s Degree from George Washington University in Washington D.C. and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of California San Diego, La Jolla, Calif. He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

In a prepared statement, Authority chairwoman Glennie Bench stated, “In addition to the above experience, the Hospital Authority found several of Jim’s accomplishments to be particularly applicable to Bainbridge and Decatur County. These include Lambert’s track record of improving employee satisfaction and engagement, fund raising for capital projects, adding new service lines, and focusing on quality care and financial stability.”

Lambert is also a former Rotarian who enjoys tennis, golf and backpacking.

The Hospital began the CEO search in the spring, utilizing the services of Witt/Kieffer, a nationwide search firm.

“We had three excellent (finalists) candidates to choose from,” said board member Charles Tyson.  He went on to compliment the work of Interim CEO/CFO Gregg Magers, saying he has done a good job and he hopes this new CEO will be as good. Many of the other board members expressed the same thoughts.

Magers announced he has begun telephone interviews for the CFO position and hopes to find three candidates to be interviewed after new CEO Lambert is in place and can have input in the decision making process.

Magers believes he will then be able to move on in mid-December.

“The Hospital Authority is eager to begin working with Mr. Lambert and will support him in making our hospital the best rural hospital in Georgia,” Bench said. “We are confident he can lead us to meet that goal.”