The visionary leader behind Gunnison Valley Health, CEO Rob Santilli, announced
his upcoming retirement at the end of this year.
After 27 years at a large healthcare system in Philadelphia, Santilli was
a stranger to rural healthcare when he accepted the top leadership position
in 2012. At that time, Gunnison Valley Health was struggling financially
and at risk of closing its doors. Imagining what rural healthcare could
be, Santilli introduced new services, instilled innovative thinking in
his leadership team and transformed the healthcare system to what it is
known today; a Top 100 Critical Access Hospital in the nation eight times.
Gunnison Valley Health’s Board of Trustee Chair, Don Haver, said
under Santilli’s leadership and guidance, the healthcare system
has delivered outstanding results and accomplishments.
“Rob not only turned the healthcare system around, he imagined what
healthcare could be like in our community,” Haver said.
“Rob was instrumental in delivering a $23 million Senior Care Center
in the Valley which was based on a new neighborhood model for senior living.
He also increased additional services in the Gunnison Valley with 24/7
hospitalists in our patient care unit, as well as invested in new technology,
telehealth partnerships with larger hospitals and supported a new behavioral
health department,” he said.
“More recently, Rob has completed a five-year strategic plan to successfully
expand and position the healthcare system for the future.”
Santilli recognized that although under his leadership the healthcare system
has achieved many accomplishments, it has been a team approach that has
brought each project to fruition.
“We are a group who believes the strength of the health system is
the strength of the community,” Santilli said. “What we have
achieved together over the past nine years gives me total confidence that
our leadership team, medical staff and each employee will continue the
journey ahead to deliver exceptional care to our community.”
Haver confirmed the Board of Trustees has engaged a national search firm
to replace Santilli by the end of the year. The search committee will
also include the support of a leadership specialist who will offer guidance
to the Board of Trustees.
Gunnison Valley Health’s Chief Financial Officer, Mark VanderVeer,
said the new CEO will have big shoes to fill after Santilli’s departure.
“Rob is very compassionate, personable and well-respected with his
peers and employees alike,” VanderVeer said. “He is unique
as he brings a very strong operational perspective to the healthcare system,
but it’s also about the vision which is equally important.”
Haver acknowledged Santilli’s passion, leadership and guidance has
created a strong foundation for the healthcare system to continually grow
and achieve excellence.
“On behalf of the Board of Trustees and the employees at Gunnison
Valley Health, thank you, Rob, for your commitment and contribution to
the health of our community. We will continue to build on the legacy you
have provided over the years, and look forward to fulfilling the vision
of what Gunnison Valley Health can be in the future.”