Dr. Joanne Conroy to Lead Dartmouth-Hitchcock

Dr. Joanne Mather Conroy has been selected as the second Chief Executive Officer and President of Dartmouth-Hitchcock and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health, Board of Trustees Chair Anne-Lee Verville announced today. The appointment was made by a unanimous vote of the Board at a special meeting on June 14.

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Dr. Conroy, 61, is currently CEO of Lahey Hospital and Medical Center in Burlington, Mass. The 343-bed hospital serves more than 1.2 million patients annually, and is the flagship center for the Lahey Health System, as well as teaching and partner research location for Tufts University School of Medicine.  She previously held leadership positions at the Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine, Atlantic Health System, and the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

“In Dr. Conroy, the Trustees believe we have found an exceptional person to lead the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health system,” said Ms. Verville. "The Search Committee and the Board were particularly impressed by Dr. Conroy's collaborative approach, communication skills, and demonstrated ability to think and work strategically to achieve key goals. We also appreciate her experience at Lahey working to develop and drive an effective clinical integration strategy, expanding research and educational programs, and strengthening a culture of philanthropy.”

“Coming back to New Hampshire is like a homecoming for me,” said Dr. Conroy, a 1977 graduate of Dartmouth College. “It will be wonderful to be back in a place I love, but more wonderful still to have the privilege of serving an organization I’ve long admired as a leader in patient-centered care and the evolution of care delivery. Dartmouth-Hitchcock combines the best of medical skill, technology, teaching, and research for the benefit of patients and families, and at the same time, never stops in its quest for improvement. I look forward to being part of that passionate quest in partnership with the patients of the region.”

Dr. James N. Weinstein, who steps down as CEO and President on June 30, called Conroy "a fantastic choice for D-H. She is a dynamic leader who will carry forward the themes of population health and value-based care in new payment models, while continuing to create seamless integration across our system," he said. "I am confident she will add to the great history and traditions of Dartmouth-Hitchcock, while ensuring that Dartmouth-Hitchcock and the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health system fulfill the vision of improving the lives of the people and communities we serve, for generations to come."

“The Board was fortunate to have dozens of highly qualified applicants from across the nation to consider during the search process,” said D-H Trustee William Conaty, Co-Chair of the Search Committee, and former worldwide leader of human resources for General Electric. “From this extraordinary group, Dr. Conroy quickly rose to the top. The Board feels confident that her skills, knowledge, experience, and deep understanding of the issues facing academic medical centers make her the right person to lead Dartmouth-Hitchcock forward at this time in history.”

Darrell G. Kirch, MD, President and CEO of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), cheered the appointment of Dr. Conroy, saying “Dr. Conroy brings a wealth of experience, exceptional creative energy, and a deep commitment to patient-centered care to her leadership role at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health.  She has a clear vision for how the highest quality and most complex clinical services, cutting edge research, and education of the next generation of health professionals come together in the academic health center, to create the future of health care for our nation.”

After graduating with a BA in Chemistry from Dartmouth, Dr. Conroy received her medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). An anesthesiologist, she is board certified with the American Board of Anesthesiologists, attained a Certificate of Added Qualifications in Pain Management, and is a diplomate with the American Academy of Pain Management.

She has received several awards and honors, including being named one of the top 25 Women in Healthcare by Modern Healthcare magazine and one of the “130 Women Hospital and Health System Leaders To Know” in 2015 and 2016 by Becker’s Hospital Review. She also holds several board positions and memberships in societies, and authored abstracts, book chapters, executive presentations, and numerous peer and non-peer reviewed articles.

Conroy will assume her role at D-H on August 7, 2017. Between July 1 and August 6, Dr. Edward Merrens, Chief Clinical Officer, and Stephen J. LeBlanc, Chief Administrative Officer, will hold the titles of Co-Interim CEO and President, reporting to the Board of Trustees.

More information about Dr. Conroy can be found at http://www.dartmouth-hitchcock.org/about_dh/incoming_ceo.html.

Members of the Search Committee:

Jeffrey A. Cohen, MD

Trustee, D-H Board of Trustees; Chair of the Department of Neurology; Member, Board of Governors

Duane A. Compton, PhD

Trustee, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees; Dean, Geisel School of Medicine;

Member, Board of Governors

William J. Conaty, Co-Chair

Trustee, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees; Chair, Talent Development and Compensation Committee

(Former Senior Vice President, Corporate Human Resources, General Electric)

Vincent S. Conti

Trustee, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees; Chair, Value Committee

(Former President and CEO, Maine Medical Center)

Denis A. Cortese, MD

Trustee, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees; Chair, Research and Education


(Emeritus President and CEO, Mayo Clinic)

Barbara J. Couch

Trustee and Board Secretary, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees

(Former Vice President, Human Resources, Hypertherm)

Robert A. Oden, Jr., PhD

Board Vice Chair, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees

(Former President of Carlton College and of Kenyon College)

Maria D. Padin, MD

Chief Medical Officer, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center; Member, Board of


Susan A. Reeves, EdD, RN

Board Chair, New London Hospital; Professor and Dean, School of Nursing and Health Professions, Colby-Sawyer College; Incoming Chief Nursing Executive for Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health

Anne-Lee Verville, Co-Chair

Board Chair, D-H and D-HH Boards of Trustees; Chair, Governance Committee

(Former Chief Financial Officer, IBM U.S. Marketing Group and Former IBM Chief Information Officer)

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