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St. Mary's president resigns

January 26, 2018 at 4:43 a.m. | Updated January 26, 2018 at 4:07 p.m.
Brent VanConia

SSM Health began the search for a new president of its Jefferson City hospital this week after Brent VanConia resigned.

Philip Gustafson, former president of SSM Health's Illinois region, will serve as interim president while SSM Health searches for a new Jefferson City regional president.

VanConia began his tenure as president of St. Mary's Hospital in July 2007, when he took over for former regional president Betsy Aderholdt.

Jessica Royston, a spokeswoman in Jefferson City for the hospital chain, confirmed Thursday that VanConia resigned "to pursue other opportunities."

VanConia's last day will be Feb. 9. Gustafson will start Feb. 12.

Under VanConia's leadership, SSM Health opened the new 375,000-square-foot St. Mary's Hospital at 2505 Mission Drive in late 2014. In July 2015, SSM Health announced plans to expand its birthing center at the new facility.

Last November, SSM Health cut 1 percent of its workforce, mostly in administrative positions, because of operational and financial challenges.

Royston gave no time estimate for finding a new regional president.


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