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Skiff Medical Center names new CEO

Published: Monday, June 16, 2014 11:16 a.m. CST • Updated: Monday, June 16, 2014 12:23 p.m. CST

The Skiff Medical Center Board of Trustees has named Brett Altman to the permanent position of president and CEO of Skiff Medical Center. He will step into his new role on July 18 upon the departure of current CEO Steve Long, who has accepted a hospital leadership position in Indiana.

“Brett is ready for this next step in his career,” Long said. “He brings an exceptional combination of clinical experience, administrative experience and a unique educational background, with both an MBA and a doctorate in physical therapy.”

Employed at Skiff since 1994, Altman has previously served as Chief Operating Officer, Clinical Operations Officer, interim CEO and Director of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

“I am very humbled that the board feels that I am the best person to move the organization forward,” Altman said. “I recognize the challenge and that it will take a full effort from all of the wonderful members of the Skiff team, medical community and citizens to make certain that we continue to have the best care close to home.”

Altman’s honors include being named Sports Medicine Professional of the Year, appointment to the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Nutrition, and receiving the Olive Farr Award, which is the highest honor bestowed on a member of the Iowa Physical Therapy Association. He was selected to serve as a member of the U.S. medical delegation at the 2003 Pan American Games in the Dominican Republic, the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, and has traveled extensively with the USA Triathlon team. He is a past President of the Iowa Physical Therapy Association. Recently, Altman was named to the Advisory Council of the Iowa Healthcare Collaborative. Altman is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, which is the highest standard of certification for health-care management.

Altman is current club President of iSpeak Toastmasters in Newton. He received his Competent Toastmaster in 1999 and his Competent Leader and Advance Leader Bronze in 2014. In addition to Toastmasters, Altman is an active member of the Newton Kiwanis and currently serves on the elder board at Community Heights Alliance Church. Altman and his wife of 22 years, Sarah, have four children ages 8 through 14.

In addition to naming Altman as CEO, the board officially accepted the recommendation of an outside assessment team, Clifton|Larson|Allen, that Skiff should begin the process of seeking a partner. Specifically, the board directed the senior leadership team to establish an affiliation team and develop a specific strategy to move this process along as quickly as possible.

The board also directed that Altman, in his new role as CEO, devote the majority of his time to leading this effort. To ensure this is possible, the board has approved the development of the position of interim Chief Administrative Officer, who will provide senior-level leadership for the day-to-day administrative, support and financial functions at Skiff; this position will be filled by an external candidate. This individual will work closely with Skiff’s Chief Nursing Officer, Sheryl Tilus, to manage the daily operations of the hospital while Altman focuses his attention on the affiliation process.

“We were blessed to have Steve Long as an extraordinary leader in our community for the past four and a half years,” Altman said, “and he will be deeply missed. My family has called Newton home for the past 20 years, and we are committed to finding a partner to ensure that Newton and Jasper County have a hospital for the long haul.”

An announcement regarding the individual named to the interim administrative role will be forthcoming.

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