Canton, OH: Thomas E. Cecconi, President and CEO, announced today his plan to begin steps to retirement from Mercy Medical Center, effective December 31, 2017. Cecconi has held this position since April 2003, and also served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from February 2002 to April 2003. Prior to joining Mercy, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Doctors Hospital of Stark County from 1991 to 2002.
“During my recent vacation, I had time for some personal reflection and made the difficult decision that after serving as a hospital CEO for over 35 years, it was time to retire and spend more time with my family, and enjoy a more relaxing lifestyle,”said Cecconi. “I feel that this is the right time for both Mercy and for me to announce that decision. I am looking forward to passing the baton to Mercy’s next leader who will continue to build on the successes that have been achieved and to expand the important role of our Catholic healthcare ministry in this community.”
During this transition of leadership, A. David Jimenez, Chief Performance Officer at the Sisters of Charity Health System (SCHS), will be providing operational oversight in a part-time capacity. The search for an interim CEO to serve Mercy until a new President and CEO is named is underway. Cecconi will continue as President and CEO until August 1, 2017 when he will then begin a new role as CEO Emeritus through the end of this year. In that role he will assist in the leadership transition and continue to support Mercy in its community, development, and medical staff relations. Led by Tom Strauss, SCHS president, and the boards of the Mercy Medical Center and SCHS, the task of identifying a new CEO to lead Mercy into a very promising but challenging future will also commence.
During his tenure at Mercy, Cecconi headed several key building projects, including: the new state-of-the-art Intensive Care Unit and parking deck; the renovated and expanded Emergency Department; new outpatient health centers, including Mercy Health Center of Massillon last year, as well as new and or expanded health centers in Jackson Township, Alliance, New Philadelphia and Carroll County. Along with hospital leadership and medical staff, Stark County’s first robotic surgery program, the Dental Services and General Residency Program, and St. Paul Square, a medical home model providng primary care and oral health care to the underserved residents of northeast Canton, were established during Cecconi’s time as CEO. He was part of the expansion of Mercy Professional Care Corporation and the establishment of the Mercy Development Foundation. Currently, the first phase of the Mercy Facilty Transformation Project, a private room initiative, is underway.
A native of Canton, Mr. Cecconi started his career in healthcare administration at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in 1973. In 1980, he joined Hospital Management Professionals of Brentwood, TN. During that time, he served as Chief Operating Officer of Virginia Regional Medical Center in Virginia, MN; President of Paris Community Hospital in Paris, IL; President & CEO of Rutherford Hospital in Rutherfordton, NC; and as a Group Vice President for Hospital Management Professionals. He is a graduate of John Carroll University and received a Master’s in Business Administration from Baldwin Wallace College.
Cecconi is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and received the CEO Award of Excellence from the College of Osteopathic Healthcare Professionals in 1996. He is a member of the Stark Development Board of Directors Executive Committee and the New Health Collaborative ACO Board of Directors. Cecconi convened the Stark County hospital CEO’s to spearhead efforts to combat the infant mortality issue, which resulted in the formation of THRIVE (Toward Health Resiliency for Infant Vitality and Equity), a community wide initiative. He is a past chairman of the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Trustees and of the Akron Regional Hospital Association, as well as a past member of the Massillon Chamber Board of Directors and Walsh University Board of Directors. He has led successful annual fundraising drives for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), the Stark Development Board and ArtsinStark.