Sutter Health names Dominic Nakis as interim CFO as latest in a series of executive changes

Sutter Health has named the person who will be overseeing its financial operations after Chief Financial Officer Brian Dean steps down later this year.

Sutter Health names Dominic Nakis as interim CFO as latest in a series of executive changes

Sutter Health announced on Friday the new person in charge of its financial operations, following Brian Dean's departure as Chief Financial Officer later this year.

Dominic Nakis, interim CFO at Sutter Health, will begin working with Dean on May 15, and continue to work alongside him until July 1, when Dean departs.

Warner Thomas, CEO of Sutter, announced that Dominic has more than 30 years' experience in financial management and leadership in the health industry. I am happy to have Dominic's experience to lead our financial operation and strategic perspective in support of the organization's goal to increase access for our patients by ambulatory expansion and other investments.

Nakis was most recently CFO at Advocate Aurora Health. Advocate Aurora Health has 26 hospitals in the Chicago and Milwaukee area and is projected to generate $14.5 billion by 2022.

According to the announcement, Sutter will be conducting a nationwide search to find a permanent Chief Financial Officer over the next 12-18 months.

Sutter announced to bondholders that Dean accepted a position as the CFO of a Houston-based aviation company. It also revealed that Sutter’s general counsel, Flo di Benedetto would be departing later this year in order to start a consulting firm and pursue other opportunities.

Di Benedetto is with Sutter Health since 2009. Dean was appointed in 2020 after Sutter Health reported a $1 Billion loss in its first quarter, and suffered a credit rating hit, following years of operating losses in the hundreds millions. Dean led Sutter to launch the comprehensive review of its business operations, which resulted in its finances stabilizing.

Thomas stated in a press release that he was grateful for Flo's and Brian's leadership, expertise and commitment. They played a critical role in supporting Sutter’s financial and organizational stability during particularly challenging times.

Thomas took over the leadership of Sutter Health in December. Since then, a number of changes have been made at the highest levels of the organization's structure. Sarah Krevans was Sutter Health CEO from 2016 until she retired last year.

Thomas told Business Journal that employees, physicians and leaders from across Sutter Health were working together to create the next chapter of our rich history. We are excited for the future. We are aligning our organization around a growth strategy and increasing our capacity to move faster in our efforts. This involves expanding our management team by combining the promotion of current leaders to administrative, operational, and physician roles and bringing specific outside expertise.

Mark Sevco, the former COO James Conforti who was also serving as interim CEO and left Sutter Health after Thomas joined, has now been appointed chief operating officer.

Thomas has also hired former executives of his previous employer Ochsner Health to fill new roles at Sutter. Jennifer Bollinger is the senior vice president, chief consumer and brand officers, and Laura Wilt is the chief digital officer.

Sutter has reorganized its C-suite by promoting Cynthia Lee, Vice President and Chief Strategist, to Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy and Growth Development Officer, and moving Jacki Monson, Chief Privacy and Security, and interim Chief information Officer, into the role of chief integration officer.

Thomas said in a statement that the moves were made to ensure the necessary talent was available to meet our commitment of providing greater access to quality care for more patients and to provide them with the connected, consumer-oriented experience they demand.

Sutter is still looking for candidates to fill two new C-suite roles: a newly announced chief physician executive who will work closely alongside the chief operating office in overseeing acute, clinic, and ambulatory services, and a chief diversity officer who will work with Thomas regarding diversity and inclusion within Sutter's workplace.

Thomas told the Business Journal that a nationwide search had begun to fill a new role - VP and Chief Diversity Officer - in order to further embed diversity and equity into Sutter's corporate culture. This leadership position will be focused on Sutter's continued efforts to become a more diverse and inclusive workplace, as well as guiding our impact on the diverse communities that we serve.