Northern Montana Hospital is calling up a hot shot health care administrator from the clinic in Chester to run their Care Center.
Ronald Gleason, the current CEO of the Liberty Medical Center, will be headed to Havre after a five-year reign in Chester that saw his hospital pull out of a financial slump and into a growing, upgraded and innovative modern health care facility.
Born in Kalispell and raised in Ronan, Gleason went to the University of Montana before moving to Spokane, Wash., for a career at a regional public accounting firm, where he eventually became a partner.
After eight years of financial consulting seven-days-a-week, Gleason “decided I needed a life. ”
He took a job as the Chief Financial Officer at a critical access hospital, like the one in Chester, in Washington.
After that, Gleason became the CEO of a regional group of six hospitals, also in Washington.
When he came to Chester from Washington more than five years ago, he boosted cash flow by changing their relationship with Medicare reimbursements and reorganized some debt, lifting Liberty Medical Center out of its fiscal woes.
Now, he’s moving a few miles east down U. S. Highway 2, where the Northern Montana Hospital administrators hope he can work some more of that magic.
Gleason is conflicted but excited.
“I’ve made some great friends here in Chester, ” Gleason said. “It’s going to be very, very difficult to leave this facility. It’s a great place to live, but I will be moving on to a new challenge, an opportunity to learn.
“I have great respect for Dave Henry. I consider him a mentor of mine. I am looking forward to working at Northern Montana Hospital. ”