Joel T. Allison, CEO and president of Baylor Scott & White Health will transition to a new role next year as senior advisor to chairman of the board, setting the stage for a national search for a successor.
The transition is set for Feb. 1, 2017, when Allison turns 69. In his new role, Allison will advise the board chairman in the areas of advocacy, philanthropy and medical education.
In 2013, Allison was a key force in the merger between Baylor Health Care System and Scoot & White Healthcare, creating Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White, the largest not-for-profit health system in the state with 48 hospitals, a health insurance company, more than 5,800 affiliated physicians and 40,000 employees. In Fort Worth, Baylor Scott & White has several locations, including Baylor Scott & White – Fort Worth.
“I’ve been blessed — I was called into this career that I love. So while I’ve spent the past 40-plus years working in health care, I feel I haven’t worked a day in my life,” said Allison in a news release. “Now, I’m looking forward to the next phase — one in which I’ll still remain engaged in an advisory role to the chairman, while enjoying more time with my wife and six grandchildren.”
Allison joined legacy Baylor Health Care System as senior executive vice president and chief operating officer in 1993, and was promoted to president and CEO in 2000. He became CEO of Baylor Scott & White Health following the 2013 merger of Baylor and Scott & White Healthcare. Over his 23 years with the organization, he has worked to grow the system from five hospitals and a few outpatient facilities in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, to 48 hospitals and more than 900 other centers in North and Central Texas.
“A remarkable testament to Joel’s servant leadership is that he was able to build what today is the largest not-for-profit health care system in Texas, while remaining steadfastly dedicated to the organization’s mission to serve as a Christian ministry of healing,” said Jim L. Turner, chairman, Baylor Scott & White Holdings Board of Trustees. “It is in large part because of his personal integrity, character and work ethic that this organization has grown through many strong partnerships, including one of the largest health care mergers in U.S. history, yet it never sacrificed its culture or values.”
Joel T. Allison, FACHE, and the Baylor Scott & White Holdings Board of Trustees have announced plans for Allison to transition from his current role as president and chief executive officer of Baylor Scott & White Health, to senior advisor to the chairman of the Board.
Allison has woven service into the fabric of Baylor Scott & White. In the wake of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, he created Baylor’s Faith In Action Initiatives (FIAI), which has since flourished to become a multifaceted program dedicated to spreading Baylor’s ministry of healing to those in need at home and overseas. FIAI has helped communities in dozens of countries through medical missions, disaster relief, and by providing supplies to local free-access clinics and ministries.
He has also left his mark on Baylor Scott & White by creating several recognized programs designed to build and enhance a strong culture where employees feel valued, empowered and encouraged to find meaning in their work.
Under Allison’s leadership, the organization become a nationally recognized leader in health care including creating an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) — the Baylor Scott & White Quality Alliance, now one of the largest ACOs in the country.
“There is no doubt that Joel has helped shape the health care landscape not only in Texas, but in the country,” said Turner. “In our national search for the next CEO, the Board will be looking for someone who can continue to carry the exceptional momentum he has built. We know we are on the right course with the right strategy, and we plan to consider both internal and external candidates who are also high-integrity servant leaders.”
Allison has received numerous honors and accolades through the course of his career including the B’nai B’rith “National Healthcare Award.” He serves nationally on the Healthcare Leadership Council, the WSJ CEO Roundtable and the United Surgical Partners, International board. Locally, he has chaired the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, the Dallas Regional Chamber and the Dallas Citizens Council boards. He has been ranked annually by Modern Healthcare as one of the “Most Influential People in Healthcare.” In 2014, he was named D Magazine’s “D CEO of the Year” — the first health care CEO and the first CEO of a not-for-profit to earn that honor.
Following his transition on Feb. 1, 2017, Allison will office in Temple, Texas; and he and his wife of 46 years, Diane, will live in Waco, near their alma mater — Baylor University — where he serves currently on the Board of Regents.