New President and CEO for SelectHealth

Patricia R. Richards has been named the new president and CEO for SelectHealth and will be joining the organization in early November. She replaces Bert Zimmerli who has been serving in an interim role since June 2009, when Sid Paulson retired to serve a mission for his church.

Prior to joining SelectHealth, Pat served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Health Alliance Plan (HAP) of Michigan, an affiliate of the Henry Ford Health System. She previously held senior leadership positions at Anthem Health Plan of Maine, Paramount Health Care in Ohio, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Ohio.

Pat began her career in healthcare as a staff nurse in general surgery and trauma at the University of Michigan Medical Center. She completed her studies in Nursing at St. Joseph's Hospital School of Nursing, affiliated with the University of Wisconsin, and she has a bachelor's degree in Communications from the University of Toledo.

"There were many highly qualified applicants for this important position, all of whom had impressive experience and leadership skills," said Thomas B. Morgan, chair of the SelectHealth Governing Board. "We are confident that Pat is the right person for this job. She has extensive experience in the health plans field that will allow her to continue moving SelectHealth forward as one of the nation's premier insurers."

"I am looking forward to joining SelectHealth," said Pat. "There is a strong team in place with a solid track record of accomplishments. I plan to draw upon those strengths to continue SelectHealth's tradition of excellence and focus on superior service. I firmly believe the future of healthcare for our nation is with integrated delivery systems such as Intermountain, and I'm excited to be part of that organization."

The process to select a new CEO involved a national search and several months of interviews.  An advisory committee comprised of many senior leaders and board members participated extensively in a thorough process, including: SelectHealth board members Thomas Morgan, Mark Briesacher, MD, and Edward Kleyn; as well as Linda Leckman, MD, Intermountain Medical Group CEO; Tim Pehrson, Intermountain Urban North Region vice president; Larry Hancock, Intermountain Urban Central Region vice president; Dan Zuhlke, Intermountain Human Resources vice president; and Bert Zimmerli, Intermountain's senior vice president and chief financial officer.

Zimmerli, who served as SelectHealth's interim CEO the past few months, said, "Pat is a seasoned leader who possesses strong capabilities with demonstrated success in a wide variety of senior-level healthcare positions, with a combination of clinical and health plan experience. She has been extraordinarily successful as a team leader and is very highly regarded by those she has worked with. Pat has been successful in a very difficult and challenging market, and really understands the issues facing healthcare organizations, as well as the opportunities available when we successfully integrate care in a team approach to best serve our patients and members. She will be a great addition to an already strong SelectHealth team."

SelectHealth is one of Utah's largest health insurance plans, providing coverage to 410,000 Utahns, as well as acting as a third-party administrator for an additional 102,000 individuals.


Background about Patricia Richards

Pat grew up in a working class family in Wisconsin. After high school graduation, Pat elected to pursue her education in nursing and attended St. Joseph's Hospital School of Nursing in Marshfield, Wisconsin, affiliated with the University of Wisconsin. During this time, she received her first exposure to an integrated delivery system at Marshfield Clinic.

After completing the nursing program in 1974, Pat moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she accepted a position as a staff nurse at the University of Michigan Medical Center. Over the next five years, she transitioned from a staff nurse to a leadership position in administration and nurse recruitment.

From 1979 to 1983, Pat went back to college and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in Communications in 1983.

In 1985, Pat accepted a position as a utilization management consultant with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Ohio.

Over the next six years, Pat progressed through various positions of increasing responsibility in reimbursement and provider contracting.

In 1989, Pat was recruited to Paramount Health Care, an Ohio start-up provider sponsored plan, to serve as vice president of Health Services, where she oversaw claims, utilization management, and customer service. Pat was promoted to senior vice president in 1995. In this position, she focused on growth and product development, including a Medicaid HMO and Medicare HMO.

In 2003, Pat accepted the position of vice president at Anthem Health Plan of Maine. She was responsible for provider contracting, medical management, provider relations and served as part of the leadership team for strategic business operations.

In 2005, she was recruited to Health Alliance Plan of Michigan (HAP), a nonprofit health plan subsidiary of Henry Ford Health System.

Pat and her husband, Joseph Beaumont, MD (a retired nephrologist), have four children.

Patricia R. Richards has been named the new president and CEO for SelectHealth and will be joining the organization in early November.