Chris Smolik, who announced his resignation as CEO of The Memorial Hospital today, speaks with community members in May 2013 as a finalist for the job.

File photo

Chris Smolik, who announced his resignation as CEO of The Memorial Hospital today, speaks with community members in May 2013 as a finalist for the job.

The Memorial Hospital’s CEO Chris Smolik resigns Tuesday

photo

Chris Smolik

After only six months on the job, The Memorial Hospital’s CEO Chris Smolik has turned in his resignation to pursue other opportunities, according to a Tuesday TMH press release.

The Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting at 6 p.m. today to officially accept Smolik’s resignation, the press release said.

John Rossfeld will serve as interim CEO starting Jan. 27 — an appointment made by Quorum Health Resources (QHR), the hospital’s management services firm.

“QHR provides immediate interim CEO resources to minimize disruption and allow a smooth transition for the hospital following a personnel change,” the release said.

The chief executive officer position with TMH has experienced a great deal of turnover within the past year.

At the beginning of 2013, the Board of Trustees accepted the resignation of former CEO George Rohrich, who began with the hospital in 2006.

QHR’s Joyce Hein served as interim CEO for several months before TMH brought Smolik on board last summer.

Moffat County Commissioner John Kinkaid, who serves as county ex-officio for the TMH board, was privy to Rohrich’s resignation last January.

Kinkaid said he was unaware of the details surrounding Smolik’s decision.

“It’s a surprising decision, given his short tenure here,” he said. “It seems odd that this would happen because he hasn’t been here very long.”

Smolik came to Craig after six years as CEO of Riverton Memorial Hospital in Riverton, Wyo.

Before Rossfeld takes on the interim CEO job, TMH’s outgoing Chief Financial Officer Bryan Chalmers will temporarily take over CEO duties. Chalmers announced his own resignation earlier this month, with the intent to take a job in Laramie, Wyo.

Jennifer Riley, TMH’s chief of organizational excellence, said the two men leaving the hospital are entirely separate matters.

“The two resignations are not related at all,” she said. “It’s really unfortunate timing, but there’s no link between them.”

Riley added that she was unable to comment about the details of Smolik’s resignation, though she thinks TMH administration and the board will focus on “moving forward.”

Kinkaid, who will attend the special meeting, said whatever the reason for the departures, the number of recent changes in personnel is a concern for the hospital and the area it serves.

“We could use some stability,” he said. “The main thing is to keep our hospital viable and grounded, giving the best care to the (Yampa) Valley that we can.”

Rossfeld was the interim CEO for Newman Regional Health in Kansas.

“QHR has begun conducting a national search for a permanent CEO for The Memorial Hospital,” the release said. “The hospital board will be closely involved to find a candidate who is the best fit for this hospital and community. There is no current time frame for the search to be completed.”

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com.

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