After serving as Ministry Market Executive for Ascension Michigan since 2014, Gwen MacKenzie will be leaving Ascension effective April 30, 2018.
“I recruited Gwen to lead a complex market undergoing transformation to population health faster than many of our markets in Ascension,” said Patricia A. Maryland, Dr.PH, Executive Vice President, Ascension, and President and Chief Executive Officer, Ascension Healthcare. “She has advanced the clinically integrated network for both Ascension Michigan and Together Health Network, our statewide, physician-led clinically integrated network with Trinity Health and Michigan Medicine, and leaves us poised to grow. I am grateful for the time she committed.”
“When I returned to Michigan from Florida having been recruited by Pat Maryland to support her in a market I was very familiar with and fond of, I gave Pat my commitment of 3-4 years,” MacKenzie said. “Having fulfilled that commitment to Pat, I have been privileged to be part of Ascension and leave with best wishes for success. With the rapid cycle transformation we are experiencing in healthcare, the skill sets of future top leaders will likely be different as we innovate around population health and consumer expectations. I believe Ascension will continue to be a leader in this space while sustaining the Mission of our historic sponsors.”
Joseph Cacchione, MD, FACC, will serve as interim Ministry Market Executive for Ascension Michigan while continuing in his current role as President of Ascension Medical Group.
“Since early last year, Dr. Cacchione has led AMG on its transformation journey as a high-performing medical group that unites a community of providers through a shared purpose that advances our Mission,” Dr. Maryland said. He joined Ascension after serving in leadership positions at the Cleveland Clinic, including as Chair of Operations and Strategy for the clinic’s Heart & Vascular Institute. His earlier roles included serving as Executive Vice President, Chief of Quality & Operations, at Saint Vincent Health System in Erie, Pennsylvania. Dr. Cacchione is board certified in Internal Medicine, Cardiology and Interventional Cardiology and is LEAN/Six Sigma Green Belt certified. He received his medical degree from the Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia and his undergraduate degree from Gannon University in Erie.
“All of us at Ascension wish Gwen God’s blessings as she begins the next chapter in her life,” Dr. Maryland said.
About Gwen MacKenzie
“Gwen MacKenzie is a true virtuous servant leader whose compassion and dedication to meeting the changing needs of those we serve and those who serve have guided her throughout her career,” Dr. Maryland said. She joined Ascension in 2014 to serve as Senior Vice President, Ascension Healthcare, and Ministry Market Executive, Ascension Michigan.
MacKenzie’s accomplishments while leading Ascension Michigan have included the addition of Michigan Medicine to Together Health Network, the statewide, physician-led clinically integrated network of Ascension Michigan and Trinity Health, which last fall added 24/7 virtual care services and now covers 107,000 lives; adding Ascension Crittenton Hospital to Ascension Michigan in 2015 and then rebranding the hospital with the Ascension identity in 2016, the first hospital in the country to do so, as part of a larger rebranding effort across Ascension Michigan; introducing a market-wide governance and administrative structure to enhance state-wide alignment of all Ascension Michigan ministries; and creating market-wide clinical councils to align clinical best practices and integrate care models.
Under MacKenzie’s leadership, Ascension Michigan also achieved Level I Trauma Center verification at St John Hospital & Medical Center, Level II Trauma Center verification at Providence-Providence Park, Genesys and St. Mary’s of Michigan and Level II Pediatric Trauma status for St. John Providence Children’s Hospital, located within SJH&MC. The Joint Commission accredited Comprehensive Stroke status at Borgess Medical Center and St John Hospital & Medical Center. Providence-Providence Park Hospital (PPPH) was ranked as one of the nation’s top hospitals by two separate healthcare and research organizations. PPPH-Southfield is the only hospital in Michigan ranked in the top 15 major teaching category of The Watson Health 100 Top Hospitals® study. In addition, seven of the Ascension Michigan hospitals have achieved 4 Star CMS rankings.
Last year, under MacKenzie’s leadership, Ascension Michigan recruited 136 new providers, including 100 physicians; opened a 60,000-square-foot, $17.5 million health center campus in Livingston; and exceeded its target for new lives in primary care.
MacKenzie was recognized as one of Crain’s Detroit Business’ Most Influential Women in Michigan 2016. Crain’s noted that MacKenzie, a Michigan native, has had a “boomerang career,” from Detroit to Florida and back. She spent 27 years at the Detroit Medical Center (DMC). Starting as an advanced practice nurse practitioner, she worked her way from bedside care and clinical management to Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at DMC. She also was President of a number of the DMC hospitals and for a time served as interim CEO of the system. In 2005, MacKenzie moved to the Sarasota (Florida) Memorial Health Care System, where she served as Chief Executive Officer and President. During her tenure, Sarasota Memorial experienced a financial turnaround that paved the way to open seven ambulatory campuses and undergo a $250 million campus-improvement project. She also served as the Vice Chair of the Florida Hospital Association from 2013-2014. Earlier in her career she served as an oncology nurse practitioner at the University of Michigan and UCLA, in addition to the DMC.
“Gwen’s clinical experience was a tremendous asset as she transitioned to administrative leader,” Dr. Maryland said. She told Crain’s it was her “secret weapon.” Being “able to relate to physicians adds credibility because they don't expect it,” she said. “They expect me to be a CPA or CFO. I can be a calm person, but I'm also a skilled negotiator.”
She attended the University of Michigan, earning a Bachelor of Science and a Master's in Health Services Administration. She also received a master's degree in Nursing from the University of California, Los Angeles.