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CEO Scott Kelly announces temporary medical leave

Former CEO Roy Vinyard will assume interim executive responsibilities for the next 10- to12-weeks.

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For the past 22 years, Asante has been one of my greatest joys as well as a priority — none more so than the past four years as its president and CEO. That’s why making this announcement is incredibly difficult for me.

In recent months, I’ve been struggling with health issues that now require me to prioritize my health. As such, I’ve made the difficult decision to take a temporary leave of absence starting Oct. 1.

As CEO, I know the organization needs a leader who can give 100%. To do that, my health needs to improve. I’ll be taking a 10- to 12-week leave on the recommendation of my health care team, so I can focus on my recovery.

This leave is one of the hardest decisions of my career. The thought of being away from Asante for an extended period of time is very difficult, especially with all that we’re currently facing.

However, the thought of not being able to give my all is not acceptable to me, and as the leader of a health system, I can’t ignore my medical team’s advice to take the time I need to get back to full health.

With this decision, one of my biggest worries has been to make sure Asante is in good hands during my leave; this is likely a concern for you, too. I can assure you Asante will be in very capable hands.

Roy Vinyard has agreed to serve as the interim CEO during my absence. Many of you know Roy and have worked with him in the past. For those of you who are new to Asante, Roy was our organization’s president and CEO for nearly 20 years before I succeeded him in 2019.

During the coming days, Roy and I will be working closely to ensure a seamless transition. He will continue to move our planned projects forward and implement budget activities.

Please know, my temporary leave is not an indication of a permanent change in leadership. Asante continues to have a solid foundation and the organization is not being reorganized, sold or acquired.

You, our patients and our community are why I love working here. Please know that I’m incredibly grateful for everyone’s support and well-wishes, and I look forward to seeing you all again very soon.

Roy Vinyard and Scott Kelly
(Re)introducing Roy Vinyard

Newer employees may not be familiar with Roy Vinyard, who led Asante for 20 years before handing the reins to Scott Kelly in 2019. Here’s what you need to know about the interim president and CEO.

  • He joined Asante as chief executive in 1999 after serving as chief administrative officer at Oregon Health & Science University.
  • He is a former pharmacist.
  • Scott Kelly was Vinyard’s first out-of-state hire. The two worked closely for the next 20 years.
  • Vinyard’s leadership led to Asante’s Mission, Vision and Values; the PEAK and Values in Action programs; creation of Asante Physician Partners; acquisition of Ashland Community Hospital and the Asante Outpatient Center in Grants Pass.
  • He put in place clinical leadership that helped Asante earn 15 Top status for the first time, among other quality awards.
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