By Jane Hirsch, Chair, SVHCD Board of Directors — The hospital board addressed several timely topics at its August 3 meeting which I’d like to share with you in this report.
South Lot Process
The ongoing South Lot discussion led the meeting, following a closed session in which the proposals received were reviewed. The board continues to exercise due diligence with a process that has included a community meeting, an open RFP process, and review of the four proposals submitted.
The board decided to move forward with a more thorough review of two proposals – those submitted by DeNova Homes and Caymus Builders. The board formed an ad hoc committee, led by board members Sharon Nevins and Joshua Rymer, who will continue negotiations with these two developers, along with hospital administration and our real estate attorney.
Simon and Kimberly Blattner reported that they are investigating an option to create a not-for-profit workforce housing project in Sonoma and they think the South Lot may be an ideal location, but missed the deadline for submitting a proposal. The board concluded it needs to review the two proposals first.
Executive Compensation Report
The meeting also featured a presentation by Frank Glassner, CEO of Veritas Executive Compensation Consultants. Due to concerns voiced during the parcel tax campaign, the board decided to seek outside expertise to ensure that hospital executive salaries and structure reflect the market, and asked Veritas to review executive salaries at the hospital.
The company took a close look at executive-level salaries at 21 not-for-profit organizations and hospitals of comparable size and scope to SVH and compared the findings with current hospital compensation levels. Veritas found that SVH executive salaries are at, or slightly below, the mid-point in the competitive range, which is where the hospital has worked to maintain them. Veritas also reported that CEO compensation, at the 55th percentile, is near the median level.
Annual CEO Review
On a related topic, the board announced it will begin its annual evaluation of the CEO. Hiring and evaluating the CEO is the board’s most important responsibility, and the annual review is conducted each August after the fiscal year has closed and hospital financial and performance results are in. The review evaluates CEO performance for the past year, noting accomplishments and areas for improvement, and determines if the objectives and specific metrics set for the CEO bonus that year were met.
This review is thorough and robust, led by a board committee and involving extensive input from the board and members of the hospital’s executive team. One outcome is identifying the metrics for evaluating CEO performance, and bonus consideration, in the year ahead.
I would add that Kelly Mather and her team did an excellent job this past year, increasing revenues and containing costs so that, for the second year in a row, the hospital met its budget.
In closing, I’d like to note that the information discussed at board and committee meetings can be found in the board packets that are available on the hospital website (at svh.com under the “Health Care District” section). Board meetings are open and public comment is welcome and encouraged. Most board meetings are streamed live on our local cable station, SVTV, with recordings of past meetings also available for viewing.
Jane Hirsch, RN, MS; Chair of the SVHCD Board of Directors