There is a new head of Western Plains Medical Complex. as it was announced on Tuesday that Rick Wallace has been named the new chief executive officer of the hospital.


According to WPMC in a news release, Wallace will take over for Jerry Dooley on Nov. 2. Dooley had been the interim CEO since June.


"We are thrilled to welcome Rick to the WPMC," said Robert Wampler, president of LifePoint Health’s Mountain Division. "Rick is a seasoned leader who is deeply committed to our mission of Making Communities Healthier. I am confident that his passion for quality care, his operational expertise and his strong track record for organizational growth will be a tremendous benefit to WPMC.


"We look forward to the many ways his leadership will help further improve the health and well-being of the community in the years to come."


A 30-year health care veteran, Wallace has been a leader with extensive health care management experience, most recently serving as assistant professor and director of health care administration programs at Northeastern State University.


Wallace has held leadership roles with health care organizations and has been the president and CEO at San Juan Regional Medical Center in Farmington, N.M.; CEO of St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Enid, Okla., and CEO of Dunn Memorial Hospital in Bedford, Ind., according to WPMC.


"Rick’s extensive knowledge and leadership experience in managing many types of hospitals will be a tremendous asset to our organization," said Rick Sowers, chairman of the WPMC Board of Trustees. "We are honored to name him CEO, and we look forward to working alongside him in our dedicated effort to making communities healthier."


Wallace has a degree in psychology from Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tenn., a business administration master's from Webster University in Wichita and health care leadership doctorate from the University of Alabama in Birmingham, Ala., as well as a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.


"WPMC has been positioned throughout the years as an innovative, quality health care system," said Wallace. "It’s the people of WPMC making that difference.


"I am excited to begin working collaboratively with the staff, physicians, community leaders and the board as we continue to fulfill our mission of making communities healthier."


To contact the writer, email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com