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New CalvertHealth CEO Puts Focus on Quality, Collaboration and Community

“What excites me the most about coming to CalvertHealth,” said new president and CEO Jeremy Bradford, “is the unwavering commitment to quality patient care. The board, the physicians, the leadership, the staff, the volunteers … they are ‘all in.’ That is a significant strength.”

Bradford, 46, who stepped into the CEO role on March 1, is a seasoned healthcare executive who has distinguished himself in a wide array of leadership roles for more than 20 years. Most recently, he served as president of Good Samaritan Hospital in Illinois, a 134-bed regional referral center.

“His capabilities, character and experience demonstrate why his selection was a unanimous decision,” said CalvertHealth Board Chair Rev. David Showers, who chaired the nationwide search effort. “He also has a deep history as a collaborator who builds strong relationships among partners, which will be key to maintaining our independence.”

Bradford’s move from one of the largest healthcare organizations in Southern Illinois to CalvertHealth, an independent community hospital, underscores his belief that quality care is best provided close to home.

“When I walk around CalvertHealth Medical Center, what I see is loyalty and a committed team,” said Bradford. “The amount of tenure in this organization is phenomenal. That tells me they are committed to our patients and their families.”

Bradford readily admits he was attracted by CalvertHealth’s excellent reputation. At the same time, he was equally drawn by the system’s commitment to providing safe and high-quality care and promoting wellness for a healthier community.

“The focus on community wellness really resonated with me,” he added. “It is essential to partner with the community to ensure the health and well-being of its members are being met. I think you achieve this through collaboration and partnerships to keep health care close to home.”

Commitment to Service

Bradford was inspired at an early age to pursue a healthcare career after spending summers in Florida with his aunt, who was a nursing home administrator. “I truly admired her passion for helping people,” he said. “I said one day I want to be like her and here I am.”

He brings broad-ranging leadership experience within many different healthcare sectors both on the inpatient and outpatient side to his new role. During his tenure at SSM Health, he led many successful operational and growth initiatives but points to his team’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic as the accomplishment he is most proud of. “It was a pivotal moment for me,” Bradford said. “It was truly remarkable how everyone rallied together to ensure that no matter who walked through our doors, they were provided with the highest level of quality care.”

Making a Difference

Nothing makes Bradford happier than helping others be successful. “It is why I chose health care as a career… to make a difference.” His approachable style is both genuine and engaging. “I am a true believer that when you help the members of your team succeed, then ultimately the patient is successful.”

Bradford has a proven track record of inspiring and empowering others to be their best while demonstrating integrity and the importance of being a servant leader. “It is all about the willingness to be vulnerable… that allows people to get to know the real you.”

While there are certainly challenges ahead, Bradford believes CalvertHealth is well positioned to build on its strengths to address the issues created by rising labor costs, nationwide staffing shortages and ongoing supply chain problems. “COVID has indelibly changed the landscape of health care for larger systems and community hospitals alike. However, that has not changed our mission. Patient safety and quality will remain the top priority regardless of what challenges we face.”

He went on to add, “We stand for health, for care and for doing our best every day. And every single day, we put the patient at the center of those decisions.”

Getting to know Jeremy

Hometown: I grew up in a small town in Kentucky on the Ohio River about three hours from St. Louis. It was a place where people looked after one another. There was a hometown feel much like Calvert County. I am the oldest of three and have two younger sisters.

The sports teams you root for: My grandfather was a Cincinnati Reds fan so I had no choice but to be a Reds fan growing up but I also rooted for the St. Louis Cardinals. My dad is a big Orioles fan. We’re already making plans to take in a game at Camden Yards.

Favorite song: “Don’t Blink” by Kenny Chesney. The lyrics remind us to cherish life and enjoy every minute of it. You get one chance to get it right. Lastly, it touches on putting first things first – like spending time with your family.

What’s playing on your car radio? I like country music. It kind of takes me to my roots. I relate to the lyrics.

Activities you enjoy outside of work? In my free time, I like spending time outdoors with my family. We enjoy hiking and golfing together. I also enjoy fishing and hunting and working on the farm.

Who has had the greatest influence on you and why? My parents instilled in me at a young age to always make a difference, be a man of character and to treat others with respect. Another individual who sticks out in my mind is my grandmother. If I needed advice, she always had the right answer whether I wanted to hear it or not.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? Raising our two children, Maggie Beth and Turner, in partnership with my wife, Ginny (pictured at left). I know we have a way to go but I feel we’ve done a great job in being true examples to our children.

What do you enjoy most about your work? Helping others succeed. Nothing makes me happier than seeing those I work beside be successful.

If you could give one piece of advice to young people, what would it be? Always do the right thing for the right reason… make a difference and follow your dream.
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