A native Texan who trained as a primary care physician will lead the combined Alegent Creighton Health/Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) Nebraska network, officials announced Tuesday.
Dr. Cliff Robertson will begin his work as senior vice president of the national CHI system and CEO of the Nebraska network in February, the network's board of directors said.
Robertson, 51, is chief operating officer of Franciscan Health System in Tacoma, Wash., and has been on loan as interim CEO of St. Luke's Health System in Houston since October. The Nebraska network, the Franciscan Health System and St. Luke's are CHI affiliates.
“I'm truly thrilled and honored to have been invited by the network's board to join the team that makes up the leadership of 'the network,' as we call it,” Robertson said in a conference call Tuesday morning.
The Nebraska network is a new organization formed by the integration of Alegent Creighton Health and CHI Nebraska health systems. Alegent Creighton has six hospitals in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metropolitan area and others outside Omaha and in western Iowa. The CHI Nebraska system has hospitals in Lincoln, Grand Island, Kearney and Nebraska City. The name of the combined network will be introduced after the first of the year.
The current CEO of Alegent Creighton Health, Rick Hachten, and Robert Lanik, the CEO of Catholic Health Initiatives Nebraska, have announced plans to retire. Robertson's job will replace those two positions.
Richard Herink, chairman of the network's board, led the board's search committee. The panel conducted a national search that considered internal and external candidates.
“We are most impressed with Dr. Robertson's proven leadership ability, collaborative style and entrepreneurial spirit,” he said. “We believe these are qualities a CEO must possess to successfully lead in this new era of health care.”
Robertson said he was drawn to the job because of the reputation of the two groups and the chance to work with rural medicine, the academic medical center at Creighton University and independent physicians. He said he planned to spend his first 100 days on the job meeting key players in the network and community representatives.
Robertson earned his bachelor of arts from the University of Colorado at Boulder and his medical degree from Ohio State College of Medicine. He completed both his residency and internship in family practice at Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma. He received his master of business administration from Pacific Lutheran University.
Robertson is married and has three children.
The combined CHI Nebraska/Alegent Creighton Health system consists of 16 hospitals and two stand-alone, inpatient behavioral health centers:
•Bergan Mercy Medical Center — Omaha
•Community Memorial Hospital — Missouri Valley, Iowa
•Creighton University Medical Center — Omaha
•Good Samaritan Hospital — Kearney
•Immanuel Medical Center — Omaha
•Lakeside Hospital — Omaha
•Memorial Community Hospital — Blair
•Memorial Hospital — Schuyler
•Mercy Hospital — Corning, Iowa
•Mercy Hospital — Council Bluffs
•Midlands Hospital — Papillion
•Nebraska Heart Hospital — Lincoln
•Plainview Hospital — Plainview
•Saint Elizabeth Regional Medical Center — Lincoln
•Saint Francis Medical Center — Grand Island
•St. Mary's Community Hospital - Nebraska City
•Lasting Hope Recovery Center — Omaha
• Richard Young Behavioral Health Center — Kearney