Mark Tolosky Led Baystate Health Through Unprecedented Growth and Change
In December 2013, the Baystate Health Board of Trustees, led by Victor Woolridge, announced that Mark R. Tolosky, JD, FACHE, will be succeeded by Mark A. Keroack, MD, MPH, as president and CEO of Baystate Health on July 1, 2014.
The transition follows several years of rigorous succession planning to ensure a smooth transition for the organization, patients and the community. It has been ten years since the last transition in the Office of the President & CEO.
“It is an extraordinarily difficult decision to give up the privilege of serving this organization and our community, and touching so many lives,” says Tolosky. “But, I am confident that now is the right time to move on to my next phase. I’ve seen so much of what I had envisioned get accomplished these past ten years and our health system is thriving. In July I will leave knowing we are strong and well positioned, with the leadership of Dr. Keroack, to continue transforming health care toward greater quality, accessibility and affordability,” he adds.
Tolosky joined Baystate Health more than 22 years ago, in 1992, as executive vice president of Baystate Health and chief executive officer of Baystate Medical Center. In 2004, he was promoted to president and CEO of Baystate Health. Under Tolosky, Baystate has been named one of the nation’s top 15 integrated health systems and its hospitals, services and employees have received multiple prestigious health care quality honors.
In Tolosky’s years as leader, Baystate Health has invested in technology, equipment, facilities, programs, and patient care improvements that benefit the community. Unlike many health care organizations, Baystate Health’s operating margins have stayed positive throughout the recession and the tumultuous health care reform environment, allowing community investments to continue.
“Mark’s vision has been not only to transform the quality of our care, but our presence across the region as well,” says Victor Woolridge, chair of the Baystate Health Board of Trustees. “In the last 15 years, we have reinvested over $750 million in our communities, and dramatically improved the facilities and services available to patients across western Massachusetts.”
During his tenure at Baystate Health, Tolosky’s commitment has extended beyond the bounds of traditional health care to include economic health and community well-being. He has built relationships with neighbors, local schools and in 1999 established the Baystate Neighbors program that has helped more than 125 employees throughout the health system, and their families, purchase their first home.
Tolosky has been committed to the community beyond his work at Baystate Health, having served on the Boards of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Pioneer Valley United Way, the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts, and the Western Massachusetts Council of the Boy Scouts of America. He is a corporator of the Springfield Museums.
During Tolosky’s tenure, Baystate’s facility investments include the $299 million expansion of Baystate Medical Center in 2012, including the MassMutual Wing, the Davis Family Heart & Vascular Center, the Harold Grinspoon and Diane Troderman Adult Emergency Department and the Sadowsky Family Pediatric Emergency Department, recent renovations at Baystate Franklin Medical Center and Baystate Mary Lane Hospital; the construction of the Chestnut Surgery Center, 3300 Main St. outpatient center, the D’Amour Center for Cancer Care, the Baystate Orthopedic Surgery Center and the Baystate Children’s Specialty Center, all in Springfield, where a formerly underused stretch of Main St. in the North End is now a burgeoning “medical mile.”
Legacy of Leadership
Tolosky served on the Board of the Massachusetts Hospital Association for seven years (including a term as chair in 2002-2003) and was named Massachusetts “Health Care Executive of the Year” in 2004. In 2012, he received the Massachusetts Hospital Association’s William L. Lane “Hospital Advocate” Award in recognition of his exceptional leadership.
“During Mark’s 22 years of leadership the organization has experienced unprecedented growth and change,” says Woolridge. “It has been a deep and profound honor for me to serve as board chair alongside Mark. He has served with the highest level of integrity, passion and humility.”
After the July transition, Tolosky will assume the title of president emeritus and support Dr. Keroack as needed. “I look forward to working closely with Dr. Keroack over the next six months to continue to advance relationships critical to the success of our organization and the health of our community, while transitioning the duties of CEO,” says Tolosky.
Mark A. Keroack, MD, MPH to Become Baystate Health’s Next President & CEO
The Baystate Health Board of Trustees unanimously approved the appointment of Mark A. Keroack, MD, MPH as president and chief executive officer of Baystate Health as of July 1, 2014. of. As an interim step, on January 1, 2014, Keroack assumed the title and authority of president and chief executive officer of Baystate Medical Center, in addition to his current role of executive vice president & chief operating officer of Baystate Health.
“It’s a great honor to be selected as the next leader of this outstanding organization,” says Keroack,“ who grew up in Springfield. The new health care world will require an unprecedented level of connectedness between nurses, doctors, and allied health professionals; between specialty and primary care providers; between those who touch our patients and those who support them; between health plan and delivery system; and across all the communities and regions that we serve.”
“I’m excited to continue this great work, here in the town where I grew up, and across all of western Massachusetts, to achieve a higher state of caring for the people we serve,” Keroack adds.
Keroack returned to the area in 2011 as president of Baystate Medical Practices. In March 2013 he was promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer for Baystate Health. Following a rigorous evaluation, the Board of Trustees concluded that Keroack‘s leadership skills, character and his deep and genuine commitment to patients, physicians and employees make him the ideal leader going forward.
Prior to joining Baystate Health, Keroack served on the faculty of the University of Massachusetts for 12 years. During that time, he was a busy practitioner focusing on HIV and AIDS care and won five annual teaching awards. He subsequently provided executive leadership at UMass Memorial Health Care in Worcester as vice president for Medical Management and later as the first executive director of the 700-physician UMass Memorial Medical Group. He then joined University Health System Consortium (UHC) in Chicago where he served as senior vice president and chief medical officer. At UHC, a member-owned alliance of 112 academic medical centers, he oversaw programs for clinical and operational performance improvement, faculty group practice management, patient safety and accreditation.
Keroack graduated from Amherst College, Harvard Medical School, and received his MPH from Boston University. He trained in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Speaking on behalf of the Board of Trustees, Woolridge says, “I’m confident Dr. Keroack is the right leader to continue the tradition of health care excellence provided to the people in our communities for the last 128 years. He is well poised to lead us into the future.”